Skip to main content

Full text of "The United States naval academy, being the yarn of the American midshipman (naval cadet) .."

See other formats





A'l^P^'^H 3/SJlJoo 

Cornell University Library 
V415.L1 B46 

The United States naval academ' 


3 1924 030 752 434 

Cornell University 

The original of this book is in 
the Cornell University Library. 

There are no known copyright restrictions in 
the United States on the use of the text. 

Ube tknicliet'bacliev pteee, Dew ISJor): 


IT is the province of this book to describe the educa- 
tion of our young naval oiBcers in the past, as well 
as at present. This involves not only the tracing of 
the history of the United States Naval Academy and 
of the naval schools which preceded it, but the telling 
of the story of the American midshipman, — a quaint and 
humorous son of the sea, whereof even the pranks and 
jokes must not be forgotten, if the representation of his 
life is to be true. 

That this task might better have been dor>.e by one 
wearing the uniform of the United States than by one 
who doffed it more years ago than he cares to remember, 
it is needless to say. Nevertheless, study of his subject 
throughout this long interval, actuated by an abiding 
affection for all that pertains to the Navy, and a deep 
sense of obligation to his Alma Mater, may, perhaps, be 
pleaded by the author as some qualification for his 
present attempt. 

The sources of information have been many. Through 
the courtesy of the Navy Department and the Superin- 
tendent of the Naval Academy, access has been had to 
the archives of both, and to the fine collections of naval 
papers in the departmental and academic libraries. All 

iv Preface 

the memoirs and all the accounts of voyages by men-of- 
war which have been published by officers of the Navy, 
the author believes he has ransacked for light on the 
doings of the old midshipmen. The files of Niles's 
Register, the Army and Navy Chronicle, the Southern 
Literary Messenger, and the Nautical Magaziiie, besides 
those of many other journals wherein naval subjects are 
treate'd, have been searched with the same purpose. 
For latter-day history of the Naval Academy, the author 
desires to acknowledge a special indebtedness to Colonel 
William C. Church, the editor of the Army and Navy 
Journal, who has placed the volumes of that excellent 
periodical at his disposal and permitted him freely to 
cull therefrom. The manuscript minutes of the Aca- 
demic Board, as well as the yearly Registers of the Naval 
Academy itself, have been critically examined, together 
with the annals of the institution published by Mr. Ed- 
ward C. Marshall in 1862, Lieutenant-Commander Edward 
P. Lull in 1869, and Professor James R. Soley in 1876. 

But the best of all the information which he has 
gathered has come directly from the graduates of the 
Academy, both in and out of the Navy, whose kind 
interest in the work has never failed, and to whom the 
author owes the greater part of all that may be "good in 
it. Many have lived their youthful days over for him, 
and it is his chief regret that he cannot transfer to these 
pages the reminiscences to which he has listened in the 
inimitable way in which they were recounted. For this 
invaluable help, his cordial acknowledgments are due to 
Rear-Admirals Samuel R. Franklin, Stephen B. Luce, 
Bancroft Gherardi, Henry Erben, and Frederick V. 

Preface v 

Mc Nair, to Commodore Robert L. Phythian, and to Mr. 
John S. Barnes of the class of '54. To attempt to 
designate all the others who have answered questions, 
and often voluntarily made suggestions of value, would 
be to reprint a large portion of the Naval Register. 
Nevertheless, he may especially thank Rear- Admirals 
Thomas S. Phelps, Francis M. Ramsay, John A. Howell, 
Winfield S. Schley, and William T. Sampson; Captains 
Theodore F. Kane and Willard H. Brownson ; Com- 
mander Leavitt C. Logan, Naval Constructor Francis T. 
Bowles, Lieutenant-Commander Charles E. McKay, Pro- 
fessors William W. Hendrickson, Marshall Oliver, and A. 
N. Brown of the Naval Academy, and Professor Edward 
K. Rawson, the Superintendent of the Naval War 
Records; and finally, for placing him at the point of 
view of the youngster of to-day, naval cadet John Hal- 
ligan, Jr., of the class of '98. The record of the Japanese 
graduates has been prepared by the Viscount Hiroaki 
Tamura, now a United States naval cadet of the class 
of 1900. To his brother graduates in civil life, for their 
memories and often for their scrap-books, his indebted- 
ness is great, and particular acknowledgments are due to 
Messrs. Edward W. Very, '6"]; Robert M. Thompson, 
'68; Robert S. Sloan, '79, Ernest Wilkinson, '80, and S. 
Dana Greene, '83. For the unpublished letter of Profes- 
sor Chauvenet, thanks are due to Mr. William M. Chau- 
venet, and the main facts in the life of Professor Henry 
H. Lockwood, that venerable and illustrious soldier and 
scholar himself supplied shortly before his recent decease. 
The description of the new buildings of the Naval 
Academy is based upon data specially prepared by the 



architect, Mr. Ernest Flagg of New York, who has also 
kindly furnished the drawings from which the illustrations 
thereof have been made. 

Finally, for special aid in the gathering of material, the 
author has to thank Miss Isabel Smith of the Library of 
the Navy Department, and Mr. Julian M. Spencer of the 
class of '6i and now of the Naval Academy Library. 


The Beginnings of the Midshipmen 




Wherein is Told about the Midshipmen of the Revolution, and the 
Gallant Young Fighters of the French War, and finally Preble's 
" Children,'' who Thrashed the Pirates of the " High Barbarie" . 15 

Wherein we Remember the Reefers of the War of 1812 



Wherein the First Attempts to Establish a National Naval School are 
Recalled, together with how the Youngster Got his Book-Learning 
Afloat, and the Trouble he Had with his "Journal" and his 
Examinations . 37 


Wherein we Begin the Consideration of the Midshipman of the Old 
Navy — a Delightful Young Officer, as Extinct Nowadays as the 
Dodo, save in so far as he Survives in the Personalities of Sundry 
Gallant and Venerable Rear-Admirals, who have mainly Remem- 
bered what is here Set down 



Wherein we Learn more about the Sea-Life of the Old " Younker " and 
Join him in his Amusements and his Songs . ... 


viii Contents 



Wherein ^e Follow the Midshipman on Board the " Smart Ships" of 
the Old Navy, See what they Made him, and -Incidentally Note 
his Growing Taste for the Duello and the Extreme Slowness of 
his Promotion .... • ■ 84 


Wherein we Perceive how the Midshipmen were Examined to See 
what they Knew, and how, their Condition being Obviously De- 
clining, Schools were Organized whereto they might Go for Study 
(if they Wanted to) ., . . . . ... 108 


Wherein we Recount the Establishment of the Naval Asylum School 
at Philadelphia, and how the Midshipmen Lived who Came to it 
— Noting Especially the Happy Suggestion of a Youth Named 
Chauvenet who Came there to Teach Mathematics, and Likewise 
Observing that the General Condition of the Youngsters through- 
out the Navy was Steadily Getting Worse Iig 


Wherein the Condition of the Midshipmen, despite all Efforts to Im- 
prove it. Grows Perilous, and finally one of them Gets Hanged at 
the Yard-arm ; and the Worst of the Gale now having been 
Weathered, a Clearer Horizon Begins to Open with the Mast- 
heads of the new National Naval School just Awash . . , 128 


WTierein through the Masterly Shrewdness and Diplomatic Skill of 
George Bancroft, Secretary of the Navy, the Naval School of the 

United States k Fmmded in Annapolis. Maryland, witKout ' 

Troubling a Reluctant Congress for either Law or Money . V^ . 142 


Wherein we Survey the Grounds and Buildings of the Naval School as 
they originally Were and Recall the Life of the Midshipmen who 
first Went there, and finally Reach the Period when it Became 
Necessary to Appeal to Congress for Help, the which that Body 
— being Moved thereto by the Charming Personality and Great 
Ability of Secretary Bancroft — Promptly and Gracefully Accorded, 155 

Contents ix 


Wherein is Told how the Midshipmen from Sea Came to the School 

and how they Fell into the Hands of one Lockwood — a Shore 
Warrior— who Wickedly Made them Drill like " Sojers " ; and 
further of their Various Struggles against the Discipline which 
Gradually Kept Getting rather the Better of them, and Lastly of 
the Disappearance of the Naval School to Give Place to the United 
States Naval Academy . 169 


Wherein we Trace the Progress of the Young Academy and of the 
Oldsters and the Youngsters there Assembled until the Former 
Come no more : and so the Old Midshipman Begins to Bid us 
Farewell . iSg 


Wherein we Continue to Observe the Progress of the Naval Academy, 
Incidentally Considering the Merit Roll of Midshipman George 
Dewey, and also Noting the Inception of a Perennial Weil-Spring 
of Nautical Knowledge . . . . .210 


Wherein the Midshipmen of the North and the Midshipmen of the 
South Bid One Another a Tearful Farewell ; and the Naval 
Academy, Taking Refuge on the Conqueror of the "Java" and 
the " Guerriere," Sails Away to Newport . . . 227 


Wherein the War-Time Sojourn of the Naval Academy in an Old 
Summer Hotel at Newport and the Miseries of Plebe Life on the 
School-Ships off Goat Island are Recalled ; together with the 
Story of the Exciting Practice Cruises of 1862, 1863, and 1864, in 
one of which Captain Luce by an Ingenious Stratagem Essayed to 
Catch the ' ' Alabama " . ... .236 


Wherein the Graduates of the Naval Academy, Despite their Attain- 
ments, Return to Midshipmen's Duty in the Steerages of the 
Cruisers ; and, the War being over, the Academy itself Goes back 
to its Old Quarters at Annapolis to be Completely Remodelled by 
Rear-Admiral David D. Porter . 252 

X Contents 



Wherein is Reviewed the Epoch-Making Administration of Admiral 
Porter through which the Naval Academy Became Changed from 
a High School to a College and the "Honor" Standard firmly 
Established 269 


Wlierein the Time-Honored Perversity of the Youngster Assumes the 
Form of Hazing the Newcomer, and the Majesty of the Law is 
Invoked to Stop it, with Results not Anticipated ; and wherein, 
also. Various other DiflSculties, including the Negro Question, 
Agitate the Academy 284. 


Wherein we Reach a Period of Naval Decadence which Affected the 
Naval Academy as well as every other Part of the Navy, and Note 
how it Militated against the Efforts of Men of Great Ability and 
Discernment 298 


Wherein the Academy Undergoes Many and Radical Changes at the 
Hands of Captain Ramsay — and Incidentally thereto a Little Re- 
bellion Occurs which, however, Seems to have been a Consequence 
of the Past Demoralization of the Service, rather than the Fault of 
any one in Particular . 316 


Wherein we Review the Administration of Commander William T. 
Sampson, Observe the Effect upon the Academy of that same 
Calm Certainty of Plan and Action which afterwards Disposed of 
the Spaniard at Santiago, Note the Rise of Athletics, and Finally 
Sum up the Accomplishments of the Institution .... 330 


Wherein is Set forth the Manner in which a Youth is Appointed to the 
Naval Academy, and an Attempt is Made to Indicate the Turn of 
Mind he should Have to Warrant his Entering the Navy . . 350 


Wherein is Explained how the Naval Cadets are Regulated and Drilled, 

and what they must Know to Enter the Academy . . 364. 

Contents xi 



Wherein the Organization of the Academy and the Branches of Learn- 
ing there Taught are Considered . . . 386 


Wherein the Cadet's Career at the Naval Academy Terminates, and his 

Advent into the Navy as a Commissioned Officer Follows . . 400 


Wherein the Present State of the Naval Academy is Considered, and 

this Yarn Brought to an End .... . . 408 


The Graduates of the United States Naval Academy (up to and Includ- 
ing the Class of 1899) . . .... 421 

The Faculty of the United States Naval Academy since its Establish- 
ment to the Present Time . . . 469 



Projected New Buildings of the United States Naval 
Academy Frontispiece 

Coat-of-Arms of the United States Naval Academy . vi 

The Watch Bill of thk " Essex " . 28 

Now at the Naval Academy. 

The Tripoli Monument 28 

Midshipmen of 1820 ... .44 

" Thar Ain't no Mo' Duff, Gemmen ! " . 49 

From the author's " Shakings," i86y. 

First Night in (?) a Hammock . . ... 63 

From the author's " Shakings" i8bj. 

A Practice Cruise Accident ... 83 

" Who Let Go that After-Fall ? " 
From the author s " Shakings" iSSy. 

A Midshipman's Warrant of 1840 108 

By courtesy of Rear-Admiral Thotnas S. Phelps, U. S. N. 

The " Middy " of Romance, and the Real Thing on a Wintry 

Saturday AT the Academy 118 

From the author s " Shakings," i86j. 

Professor William Chauvenet . . 124 

Perry's Flag at Lake Erie ... 127 

Now at the Naval Academy. 

Old-Fashioned Howitzer Drill — The Rush into Line . 141 

From the author's " Shakings," iSdy. 

Fort Severn in 1845 . . • i44 

From an old fnap. 

Professor Henry H. Lockwood, U. S. N. . .148. 

xiv Illustrations 


The Old Tablet ... i54 

Formerly in the Recitation Building, 

Commander Fravklin Buchanan, U. S. N. . . 156 

First Superintendent of the U. S. Naval Academy. 

The Old Gate-House, 1861 . 176 

Love Lane as it Used to Be . . . 188 

From the author's " Shakings," iS&j. 

Service Uniforms of 1852 . ... 192 

Full-Dress Uniforms of 1852 . 194 

Stribling Row — Cadets' Old Quarters . . ig6 

Old Buildings of the Naval Academy 200 

Love Lane . . . 204 

Annapolis AND the Naval Academy about 1857 . 210 

From a print of the period. 

The Diploma of the United States Naval Academy . 216 

U. S. S. " Constitution " at her Wharf at Annapolis in 1861 . 220 

Commander (afterwards Rear-Admiral) Stephen B. Luce, 

U. S. N. . . . . 224 

Author of Luce's Seamanship. 

The Ancient Japanese Bell . 226 

At the Naval Academy. 

Captain George S. Blake, U. S. N. . . . . 228 

Superintendent of the U. S. Naval Academy during the Civil War.' 

Lieutenant (afterwards Rear-Admiral) Christopher R. P. 

rodgers, u. s. n. . . . . . 232 

Acting Midshipman (afterwards Rear-Admiral) William T. 

Sampson, U. S. N. . . . . 236 

Acting Midshipman (afterwards Rear-Admiral) John W. 

Philip, U. S. N. . . 238 

The Atlantic House — Quarters of the Naval Academy 

while at Newport, R. \. . 240 

The ScHOOL-SHirs at Newport, R. I. . . 246 

Naval Academy Practice Ships, 1862, at Boston Navy Yard . 250 

Professor John H. C. Coffin, U. S. N. . . 252 

Professor Joseph E.. Nourse, U. S. N. , 256 

Illustrations xv 


Lieutenant (afterwards Rear-Admiral) Edward Simpson, 

U. S. N. . . ....... 260 

Admiral David D. Porter, U. S. N. . . . . 262 

The Naval Academy Buildings, etc.. Turned into an Army 

Hospital during the Civil War ... . 264 

The Naval Academy Practice Squadron of 1866 . 268 
From a drawing by Professor Fidtvard Seager. 

Bird's-Eye View of Naval Academy Grounds from "New 

Quarters." .... .... 272 

The of the Naval Academy as Modified by Admiral 

Porter ... . . 276 

The " Plebes " Undergoing Setting up Drill 280 

On THE Practice Cruise — " Aloft, Topmen ! " .... 286 

On the Practice Cruise — The Boatswain's Mates (Cadets) 

Calling " All Hands Up Anchor ! " . . . 290 

In Study Hours — Hard at Work . ... 294 

An Interrupted Festivity ... . . 297 
Caught " Visiting in Study Hours." 
From the author's " Shakings" 1867. 

At Recitation 300 

Practical Work in Navigation — " Taking the Sun " 302 

Artillery Drill 306 

Artillery Drill — The Firing Line — "Fire!" . . 310 

Boat Drill under Sail — Prac itsing Evolutions in Naval 

Tactics . . ... 314 

A Grave Infraction . -315 

Boat Drill under Oars — Preparing to Shove off . 318 

The Naval Cadets on Dress Parade ... . . 320 

Battalion Formation in Front of New Quarters . . . 322 

The Physics Building — Section Marching to Recitation 326 

The Practice Ship " Constellation " . . . . .332 

U. S. S. '• Santee " 336 

Full-Dress Uniform of Naval Cadet at Naval Academy . 348 

xvi Illustrations 


Naval Cadet Worth Bagley, U. S. N. . . 358 

In football Uniform. 

The " God of 2.5 " . . . 363 ■ 

Memorial and Assembly Hall in the Projected New Cadets' 

Quarters at the Naval Academy . . . . 368 

From the architect's drawing. 

Plan for Proposed Rebuilding of the Naval Academy . 378 

From the architect's drawing. 

" Plebes " AT Target-Firing. 385 

From the author's " Shakings," i86y. 

Grand Entrance to the Projected New Cadets' Quarters at 

the Naval Academy . . ... 388 

From the architect's drawing. 

The Naval Academy Practice Ship " Chesapkake " 398 

Mast-headed for Punishment . . . 399 

From the author's " Shakings," 18&J. 

The Projected New Buildings of the United States Naval . . .... 406 

Certificate of Proficiency of United States Naval Academy. 416 

First Experience at Old-Fashioned Great-Gun Drill on 

"Santee" ..... . . 420 

From the author's *' Shakings" i86y. 

The United States Naval Academy 






2 H 


The Beginnings of the Midshipmen 

SIR WALTER RALEIGH, sailor, soldier, and 
courtier, appears to have been the first to advo- 
cate the education of sea officers prior to their 
enrolment in the king's service. The officers of the 
king's ships in his day, however, were often any one's 
men but the king's, and, indeed, each lived in fear of 
his own lord ; so Raleigh's advice, that his Majesty's 
servants should be dispersed " privately to gain experi- 
ence and make themselves able to take charge," merely 
formed a part of that colossal and heterogeneous banquet 
of precept and erudition which was collected for the 
benefit of the Prince of Wales, who incontinently died 
young and so avoided it. 

There was no naval establishment, as the term is 
now understood, in the reign of Elizabeth or Scotch 
James. The officers who managed the vessels (" the 

2 The United States Naval Academy 

master, the swabber, the boatswain, and I ") were 
chosen from the sailors, while the fighting officers were 
soldiers who came from the nobility and gentry, and 
owed their appointment mainly to interest at Court. 

Gradually, however, during the period of peace which, 
in 1679, followed the ending of the war with France and 
Spain, a class of ship's captains who knew something 
of gunnery as well as of seamanship grew up from the 
forecastle. As these men became old, there was fear 
that no one was being prepared to replace them, and that 
the state would have to rely upon " mechanick men who 
have been bred from the swabbers," and that, therefore, 
the service would come to be despised by gentlemen of 
worth, who would refuse to serve at sea under such cap- 
tains. It was then, and in order to meet this difficulty, 
that there came into existence the lieutenant, to whom a 
high salary, for the times, was apportioned, and expressly 
so, in order, as was said, " to breed young gentlemen for 
the service." This was the introduction of the " young 
gentleman " as a sea officer. 

As is well known, the impost of ship-money by King 
Charles the First was a direct consequence of that mon- 
arch's fondness for his navy. The nation resisted the 
tax fiercely, but incidentally made advances in ship- 
building by reason of it. In 1637, the Royal Sovereign, 
three-decker, 232 feet in length, took the water at Wool- 
wich, followed by other huge warships, whereat all sea- 
faring men marvelled greatly, and believed that the 
world would never see anything more formidable than 
these great floating wooden walls with which England 
was encompassing herself. The upper deck of these 

The Beginnings of the Midshipmen 3 

vessels was divided into a forecastle at the bow, and then, 
abaft the mainmast, a half-deck, a quarter-deck, and 
then, still farther aft, a round-house; and beyond that 
the stern towered so high that the great lantern on the 
taffrail was fully fifty feet above the water line. That 
part of the upper deck which extended between the 
forecastle and the half-deck was called the " waist," and 
it was considerably lower than either half-deck or fore- 
castle, so that in order to traverse it one had to descend 
and ascend ladders. 

Here were stationed the quartermasters, who were 
assistants to the officer in charge of the deck, besides 
having their own especial functions of stowing the hold, 
coiling down the cables, attending to the steering, and 
keeping the time by the watch-glasses. Upon them first 
fell the additional work of transmitting orders from the 
quarter-deck to the forecastle, and thus saving the neces- 
sity of the officer in command aft leaving his proper 
station. It was found, however, that the quartermasters 
had about enough to do in the other particulars before 
noted, and therefore the practice grew up of detailing 
seamen — men of experience selected from the crew — who 
could be relied upon to carry orders intelligently, to con- 
vey messages between the two points. The tradition 
is that, because these men were stationed in the waist, 
or mid-ship portion, of the vessel, they were called 

Long afterwards, another name was given to the mid- 
shipmen, likewise depending upon their station and the 
work which they did. It became a part of their duty to 
lead the men aloft and to direct them during the reefing 

4 The United States Naval Academy 

of the topsails, and for that reason they were called 
" reefers." 

Of the seamen detailed to serve as midshipmen, it does 
not appear that any special competency was required, 
nor were they necessarily promoted to higher stations. 
The place carried little consideration, and, indeed, in a 
private letter, dated February 7, 1643, in which the writer 
declares that he will not under-value himself by allowing 
his son to accept the position, appears the earliest direct 
reference to midshipmen that is known. Ten years later, 
in order to encourage enlistment, provision was made for 
rating a certain number of men as midshipmen with ad- 
vanced pay. But it was not until three years after this 
that the midshipman's place was restricted solely to a 
person capable of undertaking the duties of an officer. 
Thus it came to appear that the midshipman really be- 
longed to a lower grade of officer, rather than to a higher, 
grade of enlisted man. 

In due time, it was found that orders could be carried 
much more rapidly from the half-deck to the forecastle 
by active youngsters than by old tars. Furthermore, 
young sailors inspired in greater degree the interest of 
their superiors, who were ready both to teach them and 
reward them for good conduct; and so eventually the 
midshipman's place began to be sought after, especially 
for youths of gentle birth embarking upon a sea career. 
Nor did this demand cease even when the British navy, 
in the reign of Charles the Second, sank to its lowest 
depth of degradation. 

Of course the midshipman of those days picked up his 
nautical knowledge as best he could on board ship, and 

The Beginnings of the Midshipmen 5 

often to the accompaniment of hard knocks, and this sort 
of education answered all requirements until the position 
became recognized as virtually that of an apprentice 
looking forward to future qualification as an officer. 
Then it was seen, though dimly perhaps, that proficiency 
in rule-of-thumb seamanship was not enough, and that 
some acquaintance with the art of navigation, which was 
not easily learned afloat amid the engrossing duties of 
sea life, was indispensable. Nor was it necessary to be 
afloat in order to acquire its rudiments. Hence, to meet 
the demand for 'instruction in it, the first nautical schools 
began to appear, and of these the earliest was that of Sir 
Balthazar Gerbier, located on " Bednalle Greene," where, 
in the year 1649, lectureson navigation and cosmography 
were publicly read. That the young mariner could have 
derived much useful information from them may be safely 
doubted. Copernicus is duly set to rights by the text 
from Joshua; the heavens are definitely fixed at 720,- 
134,400 leagues above the earth; and the sea is said to 
be briny so that it will the betteir float boats and be 
more convenient for navigation than water which is fresh. 

In 1676, the midshipmen of the British navy attained 
a definite official status by royal regulation, which recited 
the king's desire to give encouragement " to the families 
of gentle quality among our subjects to breed up their 
young sons to the order and practice of navigation, in 
order to the fitting them for further employment in our 
service," and provided for the possible admission at the 
king's charge " of several young gentlemen ... on 
board our ship in the quality of volunteers." 

After this, the king's appointees became known as 

6 The United States Naval Academy 

"volunteers by order" or" king's letter boys"; and 
among the first of them were Byng, Earl of Torrington, 
and Sir John Norris. It was required that they should 
not be over sixteen years of age at time of entry, and 
their pay was fixed at twenty-four pounds per year. The 
old midshipmen were not abolished, and continued to 
rise from the forecastle. Then began the feud between 
these sons of the brine and the king's young gentlemen, 
wherein the latter contemptuously denounced the former 
as " tarpaulins " and " swabbers," and the midshipmen, 
with equal gusto, expressed their contempt for the land- 
lubbers who had " crawled in at the cabin windows 
instead of through the hawse-holes." 

It was decreed that candidates for the commission of 
lieutenant must not be less than twenty years of age, 
must have served three years at sea, including one year 
as midshipman, and must pass a professional examina- 
tion. But King Charles's regulations made no provision 
for the education of the young officers at the national 
expense ; and even if they had done so at that time of 
wastefulness, ignorance, and thievery, it may well be 
doubted if any allotted fund for the purpose would 
have gone farther than the rapacious pockets of Court 

The midshipman became what circumstances conspired 
to make him; ranking just below the ship's cook though 
above the steward, and being a man or boy according as 
he happened to spring from the vicinity of Whitechapel 
or Whitehall. 

We are not without a quaint word-picture of him, 
written in about Queen Anne's time: 

The Beginnings of the Midshipmen 7 

" All Admirals as well as Captains are obliged to begin their 
rise here," sententiously says the old writer. " The Quarter 
deck is his ordinary station, which in a Winter's Night he 
traverses Hank for Hank, a thousand times over in a Watch, 
without losing one inch by Leeway, provided he be not over- 
laden." He was " birth'd in that infernal Cell, the Orlop, 
where he that can chuse to live contentedly need never trouble 
his Head with what Lodgings are chalk'd out for him in the 
other World." As for his knowledge he "can prove the 
Purser a Rogue by Gunter's scale, and compose a Bowl of 
Punch by the Rules of Trigonoriietry. There is no Contro- 
versy but he determines with Fractions; and is very often 
teaching common dunces the Rules of Division at his own 
cost." " He 's Weather wise enough to foresee Winds and 
bad Weather, but is never so wise as to lay up for a rainy 
Day." " He 's one that sometimes passes under the Disci- 
pline of the Cane or Fist, that is, whenever he is guilty of that 
great Sin of Omission of not giving timely notice of the Cap- 
tain's going from or coming into the Ship. One or two Rub- 
bers for such a horrid Negligence makes him ever after look 
as sharp out to all Boats as Constables do the Vizard-Masks 
at the Play House. His backward Stars and bad weather puts 
him often upon cursing his ill-made choice; and yet his best 
friends are apt to tell him that if he had not tumbled into a 
ship he had long ago dropped from the Gallows." 

The nautical schools on shore were now teaching navi- 
gation usefully though' crudely. All ships of the time 
were warships whether they were in the king's navy or 
out of it, since they had to carry guns enough and men 
enough to protect them from the pirates which swarmed 
on every sea, and thus it came about that the schools 
undertook to give instruction also in the art of naval war. 

"In Broad Street, Wapping, near Wapping New Stairs," 
says the advertisement of one of them in 1720, which is here 
quoted in order to show the extent and variety of the curric- 

8 The United States Naval Academy 

ulum, "are taught the Mathematical Sciences, Navigation, As- 
tronomy, Dialling, Gauging, Gunnery, Fortification, the use 
of the Globes and the projection of the Sphere upon any 
Circle, by Joshua Kelly, Mariner; with whom Young Gentle- 
men and others are well Boarded and completely and ex- 
peditiously qualified (on reasonable terms) for any business 
relating to the Accompts and the Mathematicks. ' ' 

Even with the aid of instruction such as this it soon 
became evident that the customary three years of service 
afloat was not enough to qualify the midshipman for 
promotion to the grade of lieutenant, and this time was 
soon doubled. So began the traditionary six years' 
period of tutelage before a commissioned grade is 
reached, which obtains in our Navy at this day. 

It was not until 1728 that George II. abolished the 
king's letter boys and founded at the Portsmouth dock- 
yard a school for forty pupils (aged between thirteen 
and sixteen years), called the Royal Naval Academy. 
The course appears to have been remarkably extensive 
for the times. It included marine surveying, theoretical 
gunnery, fortification, and various other subjects, most 
of which, as ships were then organized, would have been 
little else than useless lumber in the noddles of the hard- 
living, hard-fighting denizens of the cockpit, whose chief 
acquirements, like those of Mr. Peter Simple, were to 
" chaw baccy, drink grog, and call the cat a beggar." 

Besides, there was no real need of such high education. 
When a youngster had learned to sail, handle, and fight 
one English frigate, he needed no fresh instruction, and 
very little fresh experience, to enable him to manage any 
other frigate ; for the motive power of ships everywhere 
was the same, the differences in rig and fitting were small. 

The Beginnings of the Midshipmen 9 

guns were alike, and gunnery advanced to about the same 
degree in all navies. All the theoretical knowledge 
which he had to possess in order to do his work and to 
get his promotion in due time, the warrant officers could 
and generally did teach him. Rough treatment en- 
forced it, and the Admiralty helped him, after a fashion, 
by " catching him young " with his mind plastic to all 
impressions — useful and otherwise. Sometimes, in fact, 
it captured him in the nursery. Of three British ad- 
mirals, Sir Charles Hamilton, Sir Charles Bullen, and Sir 
Edward Hamilton, the first two went to sea when nine 
years old, and the last donned his midshipman's jacket 
at the advanced age of seven, and fought gallantly, for his 
country when he was eight. 

After the Portsmouth Academy was established, more 
and better private navigation schools came into existence, 
but the boys who sought to enter as midshipmen regu- 
larly evaded the requirements of the former, and to the 
latter furnished but meagre support. By 1734, it became 
evident that the Academy was of little utility, for school- 
masters were assigned to certain ships charged with the 
instruction of the volunteers in writing, arithmetic, and 
the study of navigation, and " in whatsoever may con- 
tribute to render them Artists in that science." They 
were also given plenary powers to enforce their instruc- 
tion upon those who were idle and averse to learning by 
haling them before the captain " in order to his taking 
course for their correction." 

It seems to involve something of a contradiction in 
terms to say that certainly up to 1794 about the best way 
for a young gentleman to enter the British navy was by 

lo The United States Naval Academy 

becoming a servant, — yet such is the fact. The allowance 
of servants to admirals and captains was large. An 
admiral of the fleet could appoint fifty, and the captain a 
number equal to four per cent, of his crew. Although 
many fiddlers, tailors, and barbers were added to the 
retinues of commanding officers by virtue of this privi- 
lege, there were some captains who were genuinely in- 
fluenced by a desire to benefit the service, and who 
therefore adopted this plan of obtaining midshipmen 
Tvhom they could educate under their own supervision. 
It was thought no degradation to accept the appoint- 
ment. Nelson himself originally came into the service 
in that way, under the patronage of his uncle, Captain 
Maurice Suckling. 

But whether the youngster joined as a servant or by 
virtue of his Majesty's appointment, he was regarded as 
entering through the cabin windows, and the " tar-pot " 
officers who had come from the forecastle accepted him 
under growling protest, — well typified by the account 
■which Lord Dundonald (afterwards Lord Cochrane) gives 
of his own reception on boarding his first ship. 

He found the first lieutenant, in the garb of a common 
seaman, with his hair in a pigtail down his back, busily 
engaged in setting up the lanyards of the main rigging 
with the aid of a marlinspike and a lump of grease. This 
valuable officer had reached the quarter-deck by way of 
the hawse-holes, and the appearance before him of the 
lank young nobleman, six feet or so high, accompanied 
by a rather exaggerated sea-chest, and demanding to be 
shown to the part of the ship which he was to occupy, 
excited his fierce ire. 

The Beginnings of the Midshipmen 1 1 

" You get your traps below," he roared. " Is that 
your chest ? Well, do you think you 're bringing the 
cabin on board ? Hey ? " 

And then with much objurgation he ordered the attend- 
ance of the carpenter and directed the sawing of the box 
in half, accompanying the operation with that standard 
and time-honored remark that " the service is going to 
the devil," and, adds Lord Dundonald, " with sundry 
uncomplimentary observations on midshipmen in general 
and myself in particular." 

The circumstances of life in the British navy of a hun- 
dred years ago were literally appalling. The press-gang 
nightly brought off from shore its quota of battered and 
bleeding wretches, to be beaten into submission to a 
slavery beside which death might well be preferable, as, 
indeed, many found it so to be. Drunkenness and every 
form of vice flourished unchecked, save by brutal flog- 
gings and revolting executions. Diseases, which were 
the inevitable consequence of the omnipresent filth be- 
tween decks, ravaged the crew in port, and scurvy added 
its horrors when sea voyages were prolonged. Upon the 
villainy and brutality of those in command there was no 
substantial check, and even the most enlightened of the 
captains had little scruple in the arbitrary use of power. 
Human life was cheap; human suffering cheaper; and 
reckoning for the destruction of the one or infliction of 
the other was neither sufficiently demanded by law, nor, 
if asked, enforced when opposing caste prejudices or 
political interests were invoked. 

Add to this a dwelling in the cockpit, in darkness, 
down many ladders, and reeking with the foul odors of 

12 The United' States Naval Academy 

the bilge ; and then think what an impression it all must 
have made upon the mere child coming fresh from home 
into its accumulated horrors and miseries. 

Yet these were the conditions wherein the old British 
midshipmen learned their profession, wherein they lived 
and worked and drank and pummelled their messmates, 
for the law of the cockpit was always that of the strong- 
est, and so — for such is the habit of genius to rise 
superior to its surroundings — developed themselves into 
the greatest sea-fighters the world had ever known. 

Meanwhile other maritime nations had carried their 
systems of naval education to points of much higher devel- 
opment than the English had even attempted to reach. 

Spain had regularly organized her ' ' guardias marinas ' ' 
as a source of supply of naval ofificers as early as 1717. 
Earlier still, far-seeing Peter of Russia, building up his 
new navy, sought the permission of republican Venice to 
send his young boyards to learn from the famous navigat- 
ors of the Adriatic. The Venetian Senate looked upon 
the Tsar's request as a compliment, and ordered a pal- 
.ace fitted up for the accommodation of the Russians, 
and appointed a great sailor, Marcus Martinovitch of 
Berasta in Dalmatia, as their preceptor. Nor did Martino- 
vitch teach only the theoretical part of his profession, 
for the Venetians, eager to propitiate the powerful em- 
peror, provided a practice fleet, which made its first trip 
to the Gulf of Cattaro, and there the youngsters handled 
their ships and went through their drills and exercises in 
the narrow straits among the islands, Just as our own 
cadets at Annapolis drill and work during the summer 
months in Chesapeake Bay, and as they grew bolder and 

The Beginnings of the Midshipmen 13 

better navigators they cruised along the shores of the 
Adriatic and out into the Mediterranean. 

France also had adopted a system for the training of 
her young naval officers far more specialized than that of 
England. The young " gardes de la marine," as they 
were termed, were necessarily either noblemen or con- 
nected with the nobility. That was a requirement estab- 
lished by Colbert when he organized them into companies 
in the time of Louis XIV., and it was enforced by royal 
edict in 1689, when the king's son, the Duke de Ver- 
mandois, was made Admiral of France. There were three 
companies of the " gardes," all young men between the 
ages of seventeen and twenty, stationed respectively at the 
ports of Brest, Rochefort, and Toulon. The system of 
instruction was elaborate, and the details of both charac- 
teristically French. Every day the students gathered at 
the arsenal, and after hearing mass were instructed in 
writing, drawing, English, hydrography, dancing, and 
fencing. The evenings — curiously enough — were de- 
voted to exercises with the musket, with cannon, and to 
military evolutions. After a year of this preliminary 
instruction, they were sent to sea-going ships, and there 
drilled daily in pilotage, seamanship, and gunnery. 

Their place was taken in 1786 by a new body of young 
men then termed " 61feves de marine," who were ad- 
mitted between the ages of thirteen and fifteen years, 
and at first sent directly to practice ships, afterwards to 
the fleet, and then to schools established at the principal 
marine arsenals. This was a reversal of the earlier 
system in that it began with nautical or practical training 
instead of with theoretical studies ashore. 

14 The United States Naval Academy 

Yet the old aristocratic requirements prevailed, and all 
who were not relatives of naval officers were compelled to 
furnish proofs of their nobility — not four quarterings on 
the coat-of-arms on the paternal side, as the army de- 
manded of its officers, — but a near enough connection to 
Monseigneur to satisfy a special commissioner that, at 
least, a little of the blue blood of the " haute noblesse " 
deepened the hue of the otherwise republican red in 
their veins. 

The results were not favorable. It became difficult to 
maintain the needful supply of young officers. The 
common people, from whom they might have been 
healthfully recruited, were denied admission to their own 
naval service, while the nobility refused to come in be- 
cause the army offered more rapid promotion and places 
more controllable by interest. Beyond all these reasons 
was the innate distaste of the -Latin race for the sea, and 
the absence in it of the Viking quality which ever de- 
lights in the struggle with the perils of wind and water. 

The French midshipman of a hundred years ago was 
far more highly educated than his British compeer, but 
his education availed him little, since fate decreed that 
his acquirements should find their best utilization in 
repairing the disasters of war. 


Wherein is Told about the Midshipmen of the Revolution, and the 
Gallant Young Fighters of the French War, and finally 
Preble's " Children," who Thrashed the Pirates of the " High 
Barbarie " 

THE first . American midshipmen served in the 
British navy ; the position being frequently 
sought for by the colonial families, and mainly 
obtained through appointment by the captains of frigates 
and ships-of-the-line which happened to be stationed off 
the coast. So much was the place in demand that the 
captains were frequently besought to enter on the books 
of their vessels the names of children long before they 
were out of the nursery, and, of course, without any 
actual mustering on board. Such a concession in the 
case of John Gushing Alwin, later a lieutenant in the 
American Navy, by Captain (subsequently Admiral Sir 
Isaac) Coffin, probably broke up the practice, as Coffin 
was court-martialled upon charges based thereon, and 

Some of the older biographies of George Washington 
present a picturesque narrative to the effect that, when 
fifteen years of age, he received a midshipman's warrant 
in the British navy; but was deterred from joining at 


1 6 The United States Naval Academy 

the last moment — indeed, after his clothes had been 
packed to go on board ship — by the tearful entreaties of 
his mother. There is an ancient engraving extant pur- 
porting to represent the scene at the precise moment 
when the nautical hopes of the future Father of his 
Country were thus frustrated by the demands of filial 
duty. Later writers have embellished this story with 
much corroborative detail, dwelling greatly upon Law- 
rence Washington's known friendship for Admiral Ver- 
non, with whom he served in the unfortunate expedition 
against Cartagena, and the great likelihood that the 
Admiral, having brought his squadron into the vicinity 
of the famous Virginian estate honored by his name, 
should have seized the opportunity then to bestow a mid- 
shipman's appointment upon the younger brother of his 
old comrade. Unfortunately for this romance. Admiral 
Vernon was not in America at the designated time, and 
a careful search made at the author's request by the 
Bureau of Intelligence of the Navy Department, with 
the courteous assent of the English authorities, in the 
archives of the Admiralty and the Master of the Rolls, 
fails to reveal any evidence that Washington was ever 
made a midshipman or borne on the books of any British 
warship in any capacity whatever. 

The vessels which were first equipped by the English 
colonists during the French war were privateers. After- 
wards, several of the colonies maintained public armed 
ships, and, even before the Revolution, the organization 
of their officers and crews was sufficiently well developed 
to enable the officers of the brig Boston, in 1772, to wear 
a uniform, the details of which were minutely prescribed, 

The Midshipmen of Our Young Fleet 1 7 

even to the wig with two curls. As the dress was to be 
the same for all grades, and the grades, imitating those 
of the British service, undoubtedly included midship- 
men, this uniform was apparently the first worn by an 
American reefer, and therefore it is worth recording that 
he displayed all the glittering bravery of a scarlet coat 
and a white waistcoat decorated with gold lace at the 
button-holes, snowy nether garments, and a laced cocked 
hat. When the revolutionary spirit ran high, however, 
early in 1776, the Massachusetts Council, doubtless in- 
, tending to make the uniform as different as possible from 
that of the hated British redcoat, curtailed some of his 
splendor by changing the color of the coat to green. 

The first official step toward the formation of a national 
American Navy was taken on October 13, 1775', when the 
Continental Congress ordered the equipment of two 
swift vessels, of ten and fourteen guns respectively, and 
directed their despatch eastward in order to intercept 
British transports which had sailed laden with arms and 
ammunition from England for Quebec. 
,, Later in the same month the Naval Committee was 
completely organized and given charge of all matters 
relating to the Navy, subject to the final revision of Con- 
gress, and thus, through its selection, the first midship- 
men of the United States Navy were regularly appointed. 

Prior to this time, however, there appears to have been 
some sort of a naval school in existence, maintained by 
the colonies for the purpose of training officers for the 
provincial cruisers, or " guarda costas " ; but it furnished 
none of the new naval officers, who, as a rule, were 
selected from the masters and mates of merchant vessels, 

1 8 The United States Naval Academy 

and in some cases from men who had served in the Brit- 
ish navy. Those who were made midshipmen were 
given the pay of $12 per month, and their uniform was a 
blue coat with lapels and round cuffs faced with red at the 
buttons and button-holes, together with blue breeches 
and a red waistcoat. The sailors did not wear blue shirts 
in those days, but green ones. 

The distinction between the ships of the national Navy 
and those equipped by the colonies or even by private 
individuals was not closely drawn, and they acted jointly 
or severally as circumstances demanded. Virginia had 
the largest navy, which included over seventy vessels of 
all kinds, and there were at least seventy-five Virginian 
midshipmen. One of them. Midshipman Alexander 
Moore, commanding the gallant little brig Mosquito in 
the West Indies, captured two prizes, and then was taken 
himself by the frigate Ariadne and sent to England, 
where he was imprisoned, but later escaped ; and another. 
Midshipman Samuel Barron, elder brother of Commo- 
dore Barron of the United States Navy, captured an 
enemy's vessel at the mouth of Hampton Creek, which 
was so much better manned than the little schooner 
which he commanded that more men were killed and 
wounded on the British side than equalled all of his crew 
put together. 

The naval ofificers of the Revolution began their careers 
in national vessels, colonial vessels, or privateers, as occa- 
sion demanded. All of the midshipman's service of 
Commodore Edward Preble was in the colonial navy, and 
he entered the Navy of the United States as a lieuten- 
ant. Commodore Thomas Truxton first served in the 

The Midshipmen of Our Young Fleet 19 

privateers, and Commodore Nicholas Biddle was a mid- 
shipman in the British navy before he became one of the 
first of our naval captains. 

An amusing glimpse is given of the midshipmen who 
were in the regular Navy during the Revolution in the 
manuscript log-books and letters of John Paul Jones. 
The " standing orders," written by Jones in January, 
1779, for the guidance of the midshipmen of the Bon- 
homme Richard, are very brief, and read as follows : 

" Two midshipmen in their turns shall be always present on 
the Quarter Deck or Poop; the rest in the Waist and on the 
forecastle; to go aloft, however, when necessary." 

But when he commanded the Ariel he seems to have 
regulated his youngsters in a rather more practical man- 
ner, as the following extracts from his log-book clearly 

" Saturday, April 2nd. These 24 hours begins with Clear 
Weather and Moderate Breezes from the Eastward. Had a 
grand entertainment on board. Fired Salutes. Exercised 
Great Guns and Small Arms. The Captain kicked Mr. 
Fanning, midshipman, and ordered him below. 

" Monday, Sept. 4th. Mr. Potter, midshipman, ordered in 
irons by the Captain for a thermometer being broken in his 

Concerning this last entry the tradition is that Jones 
had but one thermometer, which he valued as the apple 
of his eye, and kept it jealously in his own cabin, whither 
the midshipman of the watch had to repair whenever a 
consultation of it was necessary. Midshipman Potter, 
being thus lawfully in presence of the valued instru- 
ment, unfortunately fell over something, and in his swift 

20 The United States Naval Academy 

descent struck and smashed the glass. Whereupon Cap- 
tain Jones being then in his bunk leaped therefrom and 
kicked Midshipman Potter the entire length of the cabin, 
also of the quarter-deck, also down the main hatch, and 
thus having accelerated his subordinate's journey in the 
proper direction, put him in irons, as the chronicle says, 
when he got to the end of it. 

The close of the Revolution found the colonies with an 
exhausted treasury and in a state bordering on political 
chaos. The reniaining ships, saving the Alliance, Deane, 
and General Washington, were sold, and the officers and 
crews discharged. The country was practically without 
sea power or sea protection. Nor was the Congress then 
willing that any Navy should be organized. The pro- 
posed establishment of a national fleet was denounced as 
a menace to republican institutions and the opening 
wedge to a new monarchy. Even when the Dey of 
Algiers had begun actively to prey upon American com- 
merce and to enslave American citizens, Congress argued 
that it would be cheaper to buy Algerian friendship 
through a tribute or to subsidize some European power 
to protect our trade. At last by a majority of two votes 
the naval force was authorized, and, in 1794, new officers 
for the Navy were appointed, and the construction of six 
frigates was begun. The law then empowered the Presi- 
dent to appoint forty-eight midshipmen and to fix their 

The peace ingloriously acquired by purchase soon 
terminated. French depredations upon our commerce 
had been rapidly increasing in extent, and French viola- 
tions of treaty obligations had become progressively more 

The Midshipmen of Our Young Fleet 21 

flagrant. The spirit of resistance throughout the country 
forced Congress to active measures. By the end of 1798 
the Navy was greatly increased, and war with France was 
actively begun. 

Then came into the service, as midshipmen, most of 
the famous fighters of the future war of 1812: Stephen 
Decatur, Jr., aged twenty, commodore eight years later 
and "mainmast of the Navy"; Charles Morris, first 
lieutenant of the Constitution and captain of the Adams 
in her famous cruise in 18 14; Oliver Hazard Perry, con- 
queror on Lake Erie; James Lawrence, who died with 
the immortal words, " Don't give up the ship," on his 
lips, when the Shannon took our Chesapeake ; David Por- 
ter, captain of i!sx& Essex ; Richard Somers, who sacrificed 
himself in the Intrepid ; and Thomas McDonough, victor 
on Lake Champlain. 

One gets some idea of the life led by these boys from a 
few typical instances in their early careers, which, though 
romantic, showed pretty much all seamy side. They 
were abominably treated by their superiors, and yet the 
old captains seldom failed to recognize their merits. 

" My boy," said Thomas Truxton — savage old sea-dog 
and captain of the Constellation, — when at last Midship- 
man David Porter tremblingly came to the cabin to an- 
nounce that he could stand the hard treatment no longer, 
and was about to resign, — ' ' you shall never leave the Navy 
if I can help it. Why, you young dog, every time I swear 
at you, you go up a round in the ladder of promotion, 
and when Mr. Rodgers blows you up, it is because he 
loves you, and don't want you to become too conceited." 

Shortly afterwards the Constellation fought the Insur- 

22 The United States Naval Academy 

gente, and when the Frenchman's fire cut away the fore- 
topmast rigging and the wounded mast gave signs of an 
impending fall if sail were kept on it, Porter justified all 
his captain's confidence; for he took the responsibility 
himself of cutting the topsail tie and letting the yard 
drop, thus shortening sail and relieving the strain on the 
mast. So he saved a wreck which might well have 
changed the fortune of the day. 

Another gallant youngster. Midshipman James C. 
Jarvis, refused to leave his station in the maintop of the 
Constellation during her inconclusive fight with the Ven- 
geance, despite the destruction of the rigging which left 
the mast unsupported. " If the mast goes, we go with 
it," he calmly replied to the old seaman who warned him 
of the danger, and he and all his men but one went over- 
board as the spar fell. 

" The conduct of James Jarvis, a midshipman of the 
Constellation, who gloriously preferred certain death to 
the abandonment of his post," says the resolution of 
Congress, " deserves the highest praise; and the loss of 
so promising an officer is a subject of national regret." 

Our Navy of 1798 created much surprise among the 
captains of the British cruisers in the West Indies, espe- 
cially when the commanders of Truxton's ten ships 
be'gan to compete with them, not only in the rapid extir- 
pation of French privateers, but in seamanship and skilful 
evolutions. That was the time when we learned naval 
routine from the British vessels, and copied the British 
Articles of War into our Act for the Better Government 
of the Navy, which still rules. 

Most of the midshipmen of 1798 were appointed by the 

The Midshipmen of Our Young Fleet 23 

President from civil life without any special regard to 
education or aptitude. Many had never been to sea. 
Decatur, who was among the oldest, studied navigation 
between the date of his appointment and that of joining 
his ship, under Mr. Talbot Hamilton, a former officer of 
the British navy, who kept a private naval school (ap- 
parently the first of its kind in the country) in Lower 
Dublin, near Philadelphia. Lawrence had also prose- 
cuted the same study for a few months in a school in 
Burlington, N. J. So little did Decatur know of seaman- 
ship that after he had systematically learned all the uses 
of the ropes and where they were belayed on board ship, 
he proceeded to write the name of each rope on the 
paintwork behind the rail with his pencil — a proceeding 
which might well have brought down on him the wrath 
of the first lieutenant. Yet he became a lieutenant him- 
self in a year, and commanded the Constitution when he 
was but twenty-five, and three years after that flew the 
broad pennant of a commodore, and neither feared the 
first lieutenant when he was below him, nor yet when he 
was above him ; for Commodore Jacob Jones records that 
when he was a midshipman on Captain Decatur's ship, 
and, in his turn, struggled with the tangled lead of bunt- 
lines and clew-lines and reef -tackles and braces, Decatur, 
remembering the embarrassment which the young officer 
feels when endeavoring to make his first acquisition in 
seamanship, told him the expedient and advised him to 
follow it. 

But the youngsters generally picked up what they 
could at sea mainly by using their eyes and asking ques- 
tions, as midshipmen had always done. There was little 

24 The United States Naval Academy 

incentive to study as for a professional career, for the 
Navy was not regarded so much as a permanent establish- 
ment as a force which would ordinarily be curtailed to its 
lowest limit, and then reinforced suddenly and with any 
available material in event of war. 

The Navy Department, however, was established, and 
the Navy began its independent existence in 1798. , Two 
years later, and while the war with France was still in 
progress, James McHenry, Secretary of War, submitted 
to Congress, with the approval of President John Adams, 
a plan for a Military Academy which included four 
schools, one to be called the Fundamental School, 
another the School of Engineers and Artillerists, another 
the School of Cavalry and Infantry, and a fourth the 
School of the Navy. The details of the naval school 
evidently had been worked out rather from a knowledge 
of the French system of naval education than the Eng- 
lish, for it was proposed to establish not only a shore in- 
stitution (with a professor of mathematics, a professor of 
geography and natural philosophy, an architect, and a 
drawing-master, who were to teach " arithmetic, algebra, 
geometry, statics, and navigation "), but also practice 
cruises, which the British had never favored. 

Secretary McHenry's project appears to have been 
originated by Alexander Hamilton, while Inspector- 
General of the Army, and to have been submitted by 
him in the first instance to Washington. It is said that 
the last letter written by Washington relative to public 
questions was his reply to Hamilton, which bore date two 
days before his death, and in which he approved of the 
plan. Neither the School of Cavalry and Infantry nor 

The Midshipmen of Our Young Fleet 25, 

the School of the Navy found favor with Congress, for 
when the Military Academy was organized in 1802, 
although provision was made for the other two schools, 
none was included for them. The scheme for a naval- 
school was manifestly out of harmony with the prevail- 
ing notion that naval preparedness was needless, that 
ships could be built as easily as earthworks, and trained 
sailors enlisted anywhere for the asking, and that 
the prosperity of the United States was in no wise de- 
pendent upon their sea power. Besides, it was so much 
cheaper to buy peace than to enforce it, and for that 
reason we presented the amiable Dey of Algiers with the 
frigate Crescent, which, not to mention the barrels of 
dollars which she carried, was worth enough to pay for 
many naval schools such as McHenry advocated, and 
about ten times as much as the actual naval school yearly 
required for its maintenance, when it was organized 
nearly half a century later. 

President Jefferson entered upon his term of office in 
1 801, shortly after the treaty with France was ratified, 
and as he represented the extremists on the republican, 
side, a practical annihilation of the Navy was expected. 
The reform measures, however, stopped somewhat short 
of this. 

Before the ships at sea could reach the United States 
or the officers learn that the war had ended, Congress 
decreed the sale of the whole fleet with the exception of 
fifteen vessels, all but six of which it directed should be 
dismantled, and proceeded to discharge the officers. Of 
twenty-eight captains it retained but nine, it dismissed 
all the master commandants, out of one hundred and ten 

26 The United States Naval Academy 

lieutenants it kept thirty-six, and did better by the mid- 
shipmen by discharging only two hundred out of the 
total three hundred and fifty. Having thus disposed of 
most of the ships of the Navy under the hammer, and 
started to dismantle those that were kept ; having paid 
off the crews and sent some scores of officers, who had 
fought gallantly through the war, to get their living as 
best they could, the government suddenly found itself 
involved in a new conflict with the regency of Tripoli. 
Fortunately the ships retained represented four fifths of 
the total fighting strength of the Navy, so that it re- 
quired but a few weeks to despatch a formidable squad- 
ron to the Mediterranean. 

The life of the midshipmen during the ensuing cam- 
paign before Tripoli was one of constant activity and 
gallant achievement. Some were of the party that de- 
stroyed the wheat-laden coasters in the harbor of old 
Tripoli, and one, John Downes, afterwards commodore, 
distinguished himself in the attack. Others were cap- 
tured with the Philadelphia when the frigate ran aground ; 
and others, again, were volunteers with Decatur in the 
burning of the same ship under the guns of the Tripoli- 
tan batteries; and that was largely a midshipman's fight, 
in which the honor of being the first man on the deck of 
the Philadelphia fell to Midshipman Charles Morris. 
" The most bold and daring act of the age," said Nelson 
when the news of the destruction of the captured vessel 
came to the fleet with which he was blockading Toulon. 
And when the Intrepid was blown up in the harbor of 
Tripoli, Midshipman Henry Wadsworth, the second in 
command, and Midshipman Joseph Israel (who had 

Ttie Midshipmen of Our Young Fleet 27 

begged hard to be allowed to go and had been refused, 
and afterwards was found hidden in the bomb-ship) both 
died gloriously with Somers. 

No attempt was made to instruct all these youngsters 
— Preble's" children," as he called them — who fought 
so hard and well before Tripoli. Whatever knowledge 
they acquired, other than by practical experience, was 
gained by their own efforts. The Philadelphia' s mid- 
shipmen, during their captivity of twenty months in the 
Bashaw's castle, organized a naval school, and David 
Porter, then a lieutenant, taught them gunnery, naviga- 
tion, and fleet-sailing, from their own books, which they 
bought back from their captors. 

The Naval Regulations of 1802, it is true, refer to 
" schoolmasters " who are to diligently and faithfully in- 
struct the midshipmen " in those sciences appertaining 
to their department." But there were no schoolmasters 
then or for a long time afterwards in our service. Some- 
times the chaplain, when there was one aboard, instructed 
the midshipmen in arithmetic and writing, as he was 
oiificially charged to do; but whether he extended his 
teaching to navigation and generally to " whatsoever 
may contribute to render them proficients " is doubtful. 

It was a grand school of instruction — that Tripolitan 
war. Then were firmly established the principles, the 
customs, the traditions, — above all, that rigid sense of 
duty, — which have made the American naval officer what 
he is to-day. And for this great service the country is 
most indebted to the commander of its fleet. Commo- 
dore Edward Preble. 

The Tripoli Monument in the grounds of the Naval 

28 The United States Naval Academy 

Academy guards the memory of Wadsworth and Israel 
and Dorsey and Caldwell and Somers and Decatur. It 
was erected in 1808 in the Navy Yard at Washington, 
D.C., and mutilated by the British during their occu- 
pation of the city in the war of 1812. Then it journeyed 
to the west front of the Capitol, and thence in i860 it 
was removed finally to Annapolis, to remain to the 
youngsters as they come into the Navy a perpetual re- 
minder of the gallant deeds of their elder brethren nearly 
a century ago. 

Now at the Naval Academy. 


Wherein we Remember the Reefers of the War of 1812 

THERE was no such wholesale reduction of the fleet 
subsequent to the close of hostilities with the 
Barbary powers, as there was after the French 
war. On the contrary, the tendency of the country was 
rather to foster the Navy, and both ships and men were 
maintained at the high point of efficiency for which 
Preble in the Mediterranean had established the stand- 
ard. Recognizing the need for young officers. Congress, 
in 1809, increased the number of midshipmen allowed 
by law to four hundred and fifty, and, two months later, 
removed all restrictions and authorized the President to 
appoint to the grade as many youths as he deemed 

Nevertheless, Congress remained unable to assent to 
any scheme for providing them with professional educa- 
tion. Only the year before (1808), Colonel Jonathan 
Williams, the senior officer of the corps of engineers of 
the Army, had made an earnest effort to introduce nauti- 
cal astronomy, geography, and navigation into the course 
of the United States Military Academy ; the object being, 
as President Jefferson said later in his commendatory 


30 The United States Naval Academy 

message, to render the school of benefit to the Navy 
as well as to the Army, in the evident hope of thereby 
securing Congressional favor. The scheme was made 
peculiarly democratic in that it proposed a plan of the 
Academy upon such a scale as not only to take in the 
minor officers of the Navy, but also " any youths from 
any of the States who might wish for such an education, 
whether designated for the Army or Navy, or neither, 
and to let these be assessed to the value of their 

But Congress declined to be cajoled by any such in- 
ducement. A bill was reported in the Senate in which 
all the populistic features of the plan were ignored, and 
which provided only for the removal of the Military 
Academy to Washington, its reorganization, and the 
instruction in that school of the midshipmen of the 
Navy. The measure died of inanition, and no further 
move in behalf of naval education appears to have been 
made until Thomas Jefferson, in 1814, embodied instruc- 
tion in certain nautical subjects in his comprehensive 
scheme for a university to be organized by the State 
of Virginia and incorporated with William and Mary 

After the reorganization of the Military Academy in 
1 8 12 some of the cadets were warranted as midshipmen, 
but the nearest Congress got to providing education for 
the young officers who entered the Navy directly was the 
employment of naval schoolmasters, which it seems to 
have authorized as a war measure, since it is included in 
the Act to Increase the Navy of the United States passed 
in January, 181 3. 

The Reefers of the War of ' 1 2 31 

The midshipmen of the war of 1804 had now gained 
their coveted epaulettes, and the maintenance of the 
glory and traditions of the steerage had passed into the 
hands of the youngsters of 1812. Nor were they a whit 
behind their predecessors in daring and in valor. There 
is hardly an ofificial report of a naval engagement which 
does not commend some of them. Now it is Midship- 
man Benjamin Cooper going to the relief of the wounded 
on the surrendered Peacock, and saving himself just as 
the ship sank; now Midshipman Yorick Baker leading 
the boarders from the Wasp into the terrible carnage on the 
deck of the Frolic ; now Midshipman Henry Wells fight- 
ing two British ships in his little craft on Ontario, and 
defeating both of them; now the daring attempt of 
Midshipmen McGowan and William Johnson to blow up 
the St. Lawrence. 

And they died, those old youngsters of the war of 18 12, 
just as well as they fought. There was Midshipman 
Sigourney, commanding a little three-gun schooner, at- 
tacked by a boat party, and, although shot through the 
body, refusing to go below. He stood leaning against a 
mast cheering on his men until a British marine deliber- 
ately blew out his brains. There was a monument erected 
for Sigourney nearly sixty years ago on the banks of the 
Yescomico River in Westmoreland County, Virginia, 
which perhaps still tells how he fell in " gallantly de- 
fending his country's flag on board the U. S. schooner. 
Asp, under his command in an action with five British 
barges of very superior force on the 14th July, 181 3." 

And there were Midshipmen Henry Langdon and 
Frank Toscan aloft during the Wasp's fight with the 

32 The United States Naval Academy 

.Reindeer, when both were wounded to the death. 
Langdon was in the foretop, and when the Wasp ran 
across the bows of the Reindeer to rake her, the topsail 
blanketed the fire of his men, so he went with them on 
the foreyard and set them sweeping the enemy's decks 
from under the foot of the sail, until the fatal bullet 
struck him ; and then he refused to stir, but got a death- 
^rip on the jack-stay and died where he was, urging his 
men to " keep cool and aim carefully." 

" The constancy and courage with which they bore 
their sufferings," said their captain of these two mid- 
shipmen, " leaves the melancholy though proud reflection 
of what they might have been had Providence ordained 

When the unprepared Chesapeake with her mutinous 
crew was taken by the Shannon, two of her midshipmen, 
Cox and Ballard, acting as third and fourth lieutenants, 
sword in hand, drove the flinching men back to the guns. 
Berry, in the mizzentop, single-handed fought the three 
marines sent aloft to throw him overboard until he fell 
out of the rigging, and was left for dead on the deck. 
Randolph and Flushman were made targets as they came 
down the shrouds from the fore- and maintops in re- 
sponse to the orders of their captors. Four were killed 
and three were wounded. The eleven surviving mid- 
shipmen of the Chesapeake were confined in a closet, half- 
starved, and their clothes and arms were stolen from 
them. A similar scene was enacted when the Syren was 
taken by the Medway, the first lieutenant of the last- 
named craft distributing to his men the apparel and 
jewelry of the American youngsters. Small wonder that 

The Reefers of the War of '12 33 

the British prisoners who were captured by Midshipman 
Senate of the Porcupine in the Lake Erie engagement 
expressed their astonishment that food and grog should 
be served to them. 

And there were other youngsters who were with Perry 
on the Lakes who have left noble records: Laub, who 
persisted in remaining at his quarters with a frightfully 
shattered arm, and who met his death while attempting 
to get it dressed ; and Dulaney Forrest, who was struck 
down, and on regaining consciousness coolly extracted 
the grape-shot from his clothing, where it had lodged, 
put it in his pocket, and walked back to his station. 

Midshipman (afterwards Rear-Admiral) Francis H. 
Gregory attempted single-handed to blow up a British 
frigate by means of the then newly contrived Bushnell 
torpedo. Clad in his underclothing, with a cord of sufifi- 
cient length around his neck to reach across the St. 
Lawrence, the torpedo being secured to the other end, 
he plunged into the swift current and made for the ship. 
But the tide swept him far out of his course, and thus 
delayed, he failed to reach his goal until long after the 
hour when he expected to attain it. He had just climbed 
upon the rudder and drawn up his torpedo near enough 
to enable him to begin to attach the screw fastenings 
designed to hold it firmly against the frigate's bottom, 
when he heard on board the boatswain's pipes calling 
" All hands up anchor." Knowing that he could not 
complete his task before the ship would be under way, 
when it would be wholly impracticable, he quietly slipped 
back into th^ stream, and with the cord still around his 
neck towing the torpedo, swam to the American shore. 

34 The United States Naval Academy 

That was the heroic part of the undertaking ; the boy 
part now followed. He was obliged to remain in con- 
cealment until nightfall, and during the interval he rumi- 
nated in disgust upon the failure of his expedition, until 
he made up his mind that he would get some personal 
gratification for himself, if nothing else, out of it. So, 
having discovered an abandoned lime-kiln near by, he 
lugged his torpedo there, packed in stones and brick over 
it, and in the silence of midnight fired it. The con- 
sternation which the terrific explosion created through- 
out the surrounding country was immense, and the keen 
enjoyment thereof by Midshipman Gregory went far to 
console him for his earlier disappointment. 

He was an ingenious youngster. At one time he cap- 
tured a British boat in command of a lieutenant, and 
exultingly started to return to the flagship in order to 
exhibit his prize to the commodore. But, on the way, 
another British boat, much larger than his own, suddenly 
appeared around a point of land and came after him. 
Capture seemed inevitable, but Gregory quietly waited 
until his pursuer was close at hand, and then with much 
ostentation threw the British lieutenant overboard and 
abruptly changed his course. That worthy yelled lustily 
for assistance. The British boat, which was following, 
hesitated between letting him drown and chasing Greg- 
ory, but finally decided to rescue her own ofificer first, 
which was an error, for the delay was quite sufficient to 
enable Gregory safely to escape. 

The midshipman of the war of 1812 whom this 
country knows best and honors most was David Glasgow 
Farragut. He received his warrant from Paul Hamilton, 

The Reefers of the War of '12 35 

then Secretary of the Navy, when he was but nine years 
old. He thus actually entered the Navy at an age younger 
than that of Rear-Admiral Goldsborough, who, although 
a warrant was obtained for hina when he was seven, did 
not report for duty until he was eleven. The future 
admiral was therefore but a very little boy when he 
joined the Essex in Norfolk, Virginia, in August, 1811. 
Still he stood his watch manfully on the port side of the 
quarter-deck, and acquired almost in the beginning that 
remarkable aptitude which all midshipmen possess — of 
going to sleep in any position ; for one of the old lieuten- 
ants of the ship long afterwards told how he had found 
the child calmly slumbering while leaning against a gun- 
carriage, and had covered him with his pea-jacket to 
protect him from the night air. 

Through the winter of 1811-12 Farragut was in New- 
port, and while there was sent to school to a Mr. Adams 
on shore. This seems to have been the beginning of his 
general education. But the Essex now went ori her 
famous cruise, and the story of Farragut's midshipman 
life during that period and his part in the last fight of 
his ship is too well known to need any repetition here. 
During that cruise he became temporarily the youngest 
commander who, whether before or since, has ever as- 
sumed charge of a vessel of the United States. Captain 
Porter, in his official report on him, says that Midship- 
men Isaacs, Farragut, and Ogden exerted themselves in 
the performance of their respective duties and gave an 
earnest proof of their value to the service. " But they are 
too young," he adds, " to recommend for promotion." 

Farragut came back to the United States under parole 

36 The United States Naval Academy 

not to do any further harm to his Majesty King George 
until regularly exchanged, so Captain Porter sent him to 
Neef's school, then established at Chester, Pennsylvania. 
Neef, whom Farragut refers to as rather a queer old in- 
dividual, had been a French army officer and one of 
Napoleon's guards, and was managing his school some- 
what in accordance with modern methods, although they 
were regarded as strange enough eighty odd years ago. 
He was opposed to teaching children to read until they 
could draw and construct the alphabet line by line, and 
his cardinal principle was to make his lessons as much 
like play as possible. Neef managed to gain quite a 
reputation as a teacher, and was duly vouched for in the 
journals of the time as a " person who with the most 
comprehensive mind appears wholly divested of ostenta- 
tion." This was all the regular instruction which Farra- 
gut had received up to his seventeenth year, when he 
went to reside in Tunis, where for a few months he 
studied the languages, English literature, and mathe- 
matics. Soon afterwards, although he was barely eigh- 
teen years of age, he obtained his lieutenancy. His was 
the typical career of a midshipman of the United States 
Navy in the early years of the nineteenth century. From 
the nursery to the lee side of the quarter-deck, then 
years of hard living and harder fighting, meanwhile a 
few crumbs of education picked up here and there as 
fortune favored the opportunity — that was the training 
which the country afforded its young naval officers, and 
for all the rest it left them to work out their own profes- 
sional salvation. 


Wherein the First Attempts to Establish a National Naval School 
are Recalled, together with how the Youngster Got his 
Book-Learning Afloat, and the Trouble he Had with his 
" Journal " and his Examinations 

THE first proposition for a national naval school 
to be devoted solely to the instruction of naval 
officers appears to have been made in 1814 by 
the Hon. William Jones, Secretary of the Navy during 
President Madison's Administration, in a communica- 
tion addressed to the Senate regarding the reorganization 
of the Navy. It did not specifically prescribe that the 
students should be young officers or midshipmen, and 
the school which is suggested corresponds therefore more 
closely to our present War College, to which officers 
resort for higher professional instruction, than to the 
Naval Academy. 

Neither Williams's project, which in reality was a 
Utopian one, for evolving men skilled in two wholly 
distinct professions from the same technical school, nor 
Jones's scheme for improving the education of naval offi- 
cers in general, showed that either advocate had recog- 
nized the true need, which was the preliminary education 


38 The United States Naval Academy 

of the young officer. That recognition and a demand 
for measures to meet the necessity now came not from 
any astute politician or professional educator, but from 
the midshipmen themselves. 

The appeal was made in 1815, and it is incidental to a 
protest addressed to Congress by several of the midship- 
men against the promotion of sailing-masters to the 
grade of lieutenant, because they were filling the vacan- 
cies therein, and so cutting off the advancement of the 

"Your memorialists," they said, "without presuming to 
praise themselves, hope they will be found to have availed 
themselves of every opportunity given them for acquiring 
knowledge. But if there should be any doubt (which they 
trust there cannot be) that a midshipman regularly serving his 
time in the Navy of the United States is fit for promotion, 
they with the utmost deference submit whether that great evil 
would not be better remedied by devising some more effectual 
plan for their instruction than by promoting, over their heads, 
strangers entering from the merchant service." 

Pointed as this suggestion was, it passed unheeded, 
and this, although the country had at last clearly dis- 
cerned that the Navy was no longer an establishment of 
doubtful expediency, but a force of permanent necessity 
in order to guarantee the safety of commerce and to 
secure the respect of foreign nations. In 1816, a law was 
enacted providing for its gradual increase, under which 
for many years following ships were built. Yet not only 
years, but decades, went by without an effective step 
being taken toward making provision for the better 
education which the midshipmen had so urgently de- 

First Proposals of a Naval School 39 

Nevertheless the popular interest in the Navy was 
sufficient to affect Congress to the extent of making a 
national naval academy talked about in the halls of legis- 
lation; and that was a gain, for, once started, the 
subject, despite the most disheartening neglect and 
opposition, never lost its vitality. In 1816, Representa- 
tive Burwell Bassett introduced a resolution requesting 
the Secretary of the Navy to report a plan for the estab- 
lishment of a naval academy at Washington, to consist 
of a number of professors and teachers, to be fixed, at 
which all the midshipmen in the service of the United 
States should be instructed when not on sea duty. But 
Mr. Bassett had apparently little faith in his scheme, for 
he provided for teachers afloat in addition to those ashore, 
and further suggested that to all 44- and 74-gun ships a 
double allowance of midshipmen should be sent, and that 
their time should be equally divided between ship duties 
and studies — a proposition altogether impracticable. 

Bassett's scheme came to nothing; but in the following 
year the Navy itself undertook to do what it could with- 
out the aid of Congress. At the suggestion of Commo- 
dore Bainbridge, the United States brig Prometheus, 
Commander Wadsworth, manned principally by mid- 
shipmen, was sent to cruise during the summer of 
18 1 7 along the Atlantic coast. The youngsters swung 
their hammocks on the berth deck, as sailors usually do, 
and were required to perform all the duties of enlisted 
seamen; not only in handling the sails and steering, but 
in holystoning the decks and cleaning the ship. During 
the cruise they surveyed the harbor of Portsmouth 
and several other places. This, the first practice cruise 

40 The United States Naval Academy 

made in the United States Navy was regarded as highly 

Secretary Thompson's advocacy of a naval academy, 
which he proposed in 1822, for the instruction of young 
ofificers, met with no response from the House of Rep- 
resentatives. That body was then more interested in 
whatever patronage there was to be got out of distrib- 
uting midshipmen's appointments to its constituents, 
and preferred to devote its time to the institution of in- 
quiries as to how the spoils were divided, and whether 
some States were not getting more than their share, and, 
if so, whether it would not be better to limit in some 
way the appointing power of the President. 

The Navy Department, however, explained that while 
the rule was to apportion the appointments among the 
several States according to the ratio of Representatives in 
Congress, departures from it could not be avoided inas- 
much as frequently the number of applicants from inland 
States was less than the apportioned quota, while from 
the seaboard they were in excess. It probably thus be- 
came evident to the Representatives from the Atlantic 
States that a hard-and-fast rule of appointment was just 
what they did not desire ; so a resolution was promptly 
passed in February, 1823, " that any provision of law 
restraining the Executive of the United States in the 
selection of midshipmen is inexpedient" — the ultimate 
effect of which, as will appear hereafter, was bad. 

A year later, the House refused to pass a resolution in- 
structing the Committee on Naval Affairs to inquire into 
the expediency of providing by law for the instruction of 
midshipmen and other warrant ofificers of the Navy in 

First Proposals of a Naval School 41 

the intervals of their public service, in nautical science, 
practical navigation, and marine tactics. Secretary 
Southard, however, who had succeeded Secretary 
Thompson, saw to it that the matter should not be thus 
easily throttled, and with persistent vigor unremittingly 
sought to impress on Congress that it is " vain to hope 
for a triumphant defence of our national interests and 
character without we thoroughly train, educate, and dis- 
cipline those who have to fight our battles." 

But Congress merely remembered that our national 
interests, etc., had been very triumphantly defended in 
three wars, and, as usual, argued that another war or so 
minus a naval school would make no difference. Then 
Secretary Southard became even more emphatic, and in 
1825 told the country what the state of affairs actually 
was, and pointed out in terse, plain English that its 

" are taken from the poor who have not the means of a good 
education, as well as the rich who have. They enter from the 
nature of the duties at so early an age that they cannot be ac- 
complished, or even moderately accurate scholars. They are 
constantly employed on shipboard or in our navy yards where 
much advancement in learning cannot be expected. Their 
pay will afford them a support, but no means of literary im- 
provement. The consequence necessarily is, and such is well 
known to be the fact, that very many advance in age and rise 
in grade much less cultivated and informed than their own 
reputation and that of the country require. It is the forma- 
tion of a school which shall combine literary with professional 
instruction, a competent portion of common learning with a 
profound knowledge of everything connected with military 
science, seamanship, and navigation, the theory with the prac- 
tice of their profession, that is needed." 

42 The United States Naval Academy 

Mr. Southard said a great deal more than this, not 
only cogently and eloquently, but so warmly that to find 
that, at the end, he asked for only $10,000 and some old 
buildings on Governor's Island in ' New York harbor 
makes one feel that his shot did not need quite so large 
a cartridge. But the usual fate attended his endeavor. 
His recommendations were introduced in the House, and 
there was a lazy discussion about the expediency of a 
naval school for a couple of hours, and next day some- 
body called the subject up again, and somebody else who 
did not understand anything about it and did not want 
to, objected, and, after all, it was only the country's 
business and not that of anybody's district, so there 
was a question put and lost, and thus the matter 

Yet the curious fact is here to be noted that while the 
American Congress was persistently refusing to give to 
the country a naval academy, a British rear-admiral, 
who had fought us as hard as he could throughout the 
Revolution, was contemplating the establishment of that 
very institution for our benefit, and, indeed, in a sense, 
actually had begun it. 

Sir Isaac Coffin, baronet, as his name plainly indicates, 
hailed from Nantucket. He was born in 1759. His 
father lived in Boston, and was Collector of the Port, 
but during the Revolution turned Tory. In common 
with the sons of many other colonial families, Cofifin had 
been put in the royal navy at an early age, rose through 
all its grades, and finally died in 1839 ^ti admiral. 
Twenty years after the Revolution, he established the 
Cofifin school at Nantucket, and also made elaborate 

First Proposals of a Naval School 43 

provision by will for a naval academy. He even began 
to execute his own testament by purchasing a brig, sup- 
plying her with a crew from his school at Nantucket, and 
sending her on a ten months' cruise. His project in- 
cluded three naval schools, one at Boston, one at Nan- 
tucket, and one at Newburyport, each with its own 
practice ships. 

Certainly Coffin had a remarkable prescience concern- 
ing the varied nature of the attainments necessary for the 
naval officer. His list, while it does not quite tally with 
that of the many professional accomplishments which 
our marine warriors of to-day are required to possess, 
yields nothing to it in point of multifariousness ; for his 
students were to learn not only everything pertaining to 
nautical matters, but house carpentry, blacksmithing, 
knitting, net-making, the art of cooking in all its 
branches, mixing paint, the " order of slaughtering 
animals with due economy," the preservation of meats, 
military exercises and gunnery, and the use of the back- 
sword. Finally, and wonderful in the British sailor who 
has always regarded skill in gunnery as inferior to skill 
in seamanship, he especially prescribed that his young 
mariners were to be exercised at firing at a mark. He 
designated their uniform and their diet, and even the flag 
they should fly, which, singularly enough, was the old 
pine-tree emblem of the revolting colonists, and ended 
with the astonishing avowal that his object was to form 
" a set of men who may be useful to my native country." 
But this was evidently going too far— at least for a Brit- 
ish admiral — for, after a while, he thought better of his 
benevolence, and cancelled his will. The atonement 

44 The United States Naval Academy 

which he contemplated was, perhaps, one which, on 
second thoughts, he could not get himself to make. 

The " Rules and Regulations of the Navy " were 
originally issued by command of the President in 1802. 
So far as they related to the commissioned and petty 
officers, they were ample in detail if not in perspicuity. 
But when they came to deal with the midshipmen — 
whom they reached after specifying the functions of a 
master-at-arms and just before they elucidated those of 
the ship's cook — they became brevity itself. As their 
provisions remained practically unchanged for many years 
and exercised an important influence upon the careers of 
the youngsters of at least two generations, they are here 
quoted in full : 

" Midshipmen, i. No particular duties are assigned to 
this class of oflficers. 

"2. They are promptly and faithfully to execute all the 
orders for the public service which they shall receive from 
their commanding officer. 

"3. The commanding officers, will consider the midship- 
men as a class of officers meriting in a special degree their 
fostering care; they will see therefore that the schoolmaster 
performs his duty toward them by diligently and faithfully in- 
structing them in those sciences appertaining to their profes- 
sion, and that he use his utmost care to render them proficient 

" 4. Midshipmen are to keep regular journals and deliver 
them to the commanding officer at the stated periods in due 

"5. They are to consider it as the duty they owe to their 
country to employ a due portion of their time in the study of 
naval tactics and in acquiring a thorough and extensive know- 
ledge of all the various duties to be performed on board a ship 
of war." 


First Proposals of a Naval School 45 

Whether any other single cause operated more effi- 
ciently than these few paragraphs to retard improvement 
in the education of the young officers of the Navy, may 
safely be doubted. The popular ignorance of the service 
and of its needs was reflected in Congress, and when the 
Board of high officials which produced these rules saw 
fit neither to describe nor define the duties of midship- 
men with any greater precision, certainly it was not un- 
natural that the legislator should question the expediency 
of supplying further professional instruction to young men 
whose usefulness appeared to be of so limited a character. 

Of course, the statement that " no particular duties " 
were assigned to midshipmen was far from accurate, even 
when viewed as a mere averment of fact. Their func- 
tions had been perfectly well known for the last thirty 
years in the Navy of the United States, and for a period 
mor-e than three times longer in that of Great Britain. Be- 
sides, this regulation was not designed so much to inform 
as to direct, and when it came to be construed as de- 
priving the midshipman of any specific work, other than 
keeping a journal and pursuing such glittering gen- 
eralities as studying " naval tactics " and acquiring a 
" thorough knowledge " of " all " the duties afloat, leav- 
ing him in other particulars to discover what he shipped 
for by the aid of such light as he could get from the 
arbitrary orders of his captain, small wonder that the 
whole duty of the reefer soon became condensed into 

" doing what he was told, and that quick"; and 

equally small wonder that many of the elder sons of the 
brine stoutly averred that a rope's end was better than a 
schoolmaster to help him do it. 

46 The United States Naval Academy 

Some captains undertook to govern in accordance with 
supplementary regulations of their own devising, and 
the " standing orders," neatly written out and posted on 
the gun-deck, guided the economy of many a man-of- 
war from the days of Paul Jones onward. In these, a 
more determined effort seems occasionally to have been 
made to define the midshipman's duties. The rather 
slender success achieved is fairly typified by the following 
extract from the orders of Captain William F. Crane, 
commanding the United States frigate in 1818: 

" The midshipmen are to be divided into three watches, and 
are never to quit the deck until regularly relieved either at 
meals or at the expiration of their watches. Whenever they 
are sent with a watering party or in a boat they must recollect 
the men are confided to their care, and no circumstance can 
warrant a breach of this important duty. Every proper in- 
dulgence will be allowed to the deserving, and the Hon. the 
Navy Commissioners will be made acquainted with their merits. 
They are expected to keep regular journals and send their 
reckonings to me daily. Their advancement depends greatly 
upon their attention to this important branch of their pro- 

Despite all the fog which enveloped the question of 
what a midshipman's work really was, one duty never lost 
its brilliant and unique luminosity — and that was that he 
should keep a journal. Originally this requirement was 
a good one, not because it was altogether certain that in 
after-life — say when in responsible command — the ex- 
perienced officer would recur to this production of his 
boyhood for professional aid and advice, but simply be- 
cause it gave him some pfactice in spelling and writing 
his own language. It was also supposed to lead him to 

First Proposals of a Naval School 47 

a knowledge of composition, but that cannot be safely- 
affirmed, because probably nine tenths of all midship- 
men's journals became mere copies of the ship's log, 
after the following fashion. I transcribe the subjoined 
extract at random from the journal of Midshipman (after- 
wards Rear-Admiral) Samuel F. Dupont, made during 
the cruise of the Congress in 1822 : 

" Friday, July 4th. Commences with the wind moderate 
and variable from E.S.E. to E.N.E. Standing by the wind 
and tacking as the wind headed off on either tack. During^ 
the night, weather pleasant. Until meridian, cloudy weather. 
Wind from same quarter. 

" Var. 2. p. w. Lat. obs. 37° 40' N. 

" Sick report, 14. Long. 20° 45' W." 

Of such valuable information as this there are pages and 
pages, all laboriously written out. 

This particular journal is typical for another reason. 
In the beginning of it the columns of the log-book show- 
ing speed of the ship, force of wind, barometer and ther- 
mometer, etc., are carefully copied. Then the writer 
discovers that he can gradually leave them out and still 
have his work pass the perfunctory inspection of the 
captain. Hence he abbreviates his interesting narrative 
of events by limiting his " remarks " to brief references 
to the weather. Finally, as the end of the cruise ap- 
proaches, he reaches (as often as he deems prudent) the 
acme of laconic brevity by referring to the figure columns 
only, and thus condensing his whole day's entry into the 
three mystic words, " as per cols." 

However useless the traditional journal afterwards may^ 
have become — and there are some who irreverently term 

48 The United States Naval Academy 

it a mere fetish — it cannot be denied that it had a meas- 
urable educational value in the very early days of the 
Navy when the schoolmaster was not afloat, and even 
afterwards in those ships wherein the opposition of the 
captains neutralized the work of the schoolmaster. 

The acquaintance required of the midshipman with the 
manner of " rigging and stowing a ship, the management 
of artillery at sea, arithmetric, geometry, trigonometry, 
navigation, and the mode of making astronomical calcu- 
lations for nautical purposes," all necessary in order to 
enable him to pass the qualifying examination for lieu- 
tenant at the age of eighteen years after two years' ser- 
vice at sea, had to be gained under the conditions of the 
mixed and multifarious duties which the regulations 
established for him by assigning him none at all. The 
usual practice was to neglect theoretical study entirely 
until within about six months of the dreaded ordeal. 
Then the candidate would begin to collect information 
from everybody on points of seamanship, and perhaps 
borrow a few books on mathematics and navigation, and 
with the aid of a friendly senior endeavor to learn forms 
and formulae by rote. Midshipmen (afterwards Rear- 
Admirals) Andrew H. Foote and Charles H. Davis were 
so anxious as to the results of their examinations that 
they combined forces and jointly produced a text-book 
on seamanship for their own benefit. 

It is a noteworthy fact that the examinations of the 
midshipmen for promotion were the first of all examina- 
tions held in the Navy. The earliest of them was con- 
ducted in 1 8 19 in New York by a board of senior captains 
of which Commodore William Bainbridge was president. 

First Proposals of a Naval School 49 

They were lax enough on abstract scientific subjects, 
mainly because the examiners themselves knew no more 
concerning these than did the candidates; but in seaman- 
ship they were extremely severe. In after years, as I 
shall show, a youngster might go through his examina- 
tion in an hour or two, but in the early years of the century 
it was not unusual for the board to sit for days and call 
an unfortunate midshipman before it several times for 
cross-questioning before it would finally consent to pass 
him. The difficulty of passing may be judged from the 
fact that eighty-nine midshipmen of the date of 1823 
came up for examination, and only thirty-nine of them 

From the author's "Shakings," 1867. 


Wherein we Begin the Consideration of the Midshipman of the 
Old Navy — a Delightful Young Officer, as Extinct Nowa- 
days as the Dodo, save in so far as he Survives in the Per- 
sonalities of Sundry Gallant and Venerable Rear-Admirals, 
who have mainly Remembered what is here Set down 

1 PROPOSE now to sketch the manner of life and the 
surroundings of the midshipman of the "old Navy," 
and thus to show the conditions under which our 
earliest experiments in naval education were tried. If I 
dwell upon his peculiar boy nature, his odd habits and 
customs, all more or less modified by the " sea change," 
it is because these all had their influence upon the at- 
tempts which were made to instruct him and upon the 
results which in time were achieved. 

His connection with the service began shortly after the 
receipt of the following epistle: 

" Navy Department 182. . 

' ' Sir : 

' ' You are hereby appointed an Acting Midshipman in the 
Navy of the United States; and if your commanding officer 
shall, after six months of actual service at sea, report favorably 
of your character, talents, and qualifications, a warrant will 
be given to you bearing the date of this letter. 

" I have enclosed a description of the uniform and the 


Midshipman Life in the Old Navy 51 

requisite oath ; the latter when taken and subscribed you will 
transmit to this Department with your letter of acceptance, in 
which you will state your age and the place where you were 
born. Your pay will not commence until you shall receive 
orders for actual service. 

" I am respectfully, etc. 

'^Secretary of the Navy. 

' ' To Acting Midshipman , 

"John Jones, of Connecticut." 

Prior to 1820, the uniform of the midshipman was 
pretty much anything in the shape of nautical appearing 
clothes which he chose to wear. After that date he was 
attired in a blue cloth coat, with linings of the same 
material, having short turned-over lapels with six buttons 
on a side. His collar stood up in the exaggerated fashion 
of the times, and each point was ornamented with a 
diamond of gold lace, two inches square. No buttons 
decorated his cuffs or pockets, and his vest and panta- 
loons were plain white without ornamentation. When 
in full dress, he wore a cocked hat without lace, half- 
boots, and a cut-and-thrust sword with yellow mountings ; 
and for undress, a short coat with a rolling cape having 
a button on each side. After he had passed his examina- 
tion for lieutenant, gold stars were placed within the 
diamond on his coat collar. He was free to choose any 
head-gear which pleased his fancy, except on ceremonial 
occasions, when the cocked hat was prescribed ; nor does 
there seem to have been any restriction upon the color of 
his trousers, when white ones were not especially ordered. 
This was the uniform of which the descriptioij was en- 
closed in the official letter already quoted. 

52 The United States Naval Academy 

The young acting midshipman's first appearance upon 
the naval scene was when he joined a receiving ship. 
That vessel was not the antiquated and dismantled hulk 
which nowadays we retain in navy yards because it is 
traditional to make Jacky (as the enlisted man is famil- 
iarly called in the Navy) begin his career afloat, but a 
ship available for sea duty if needed. 

There was very little of the " smart ship '•' about the 
" guardo. " Drkfts of men were going and coming con- 
stantly, there was never-ending bustle and confusion, 
and to all the sights and sounds of this strange world 
into which the candidate for future naval honors found 
himself unceremoniously thrust, there was added an odor 
which once smelled is never forgotten, and which seemed 
to be composed of the combined effluvia of rum, tar, 
bean soup, tobacco smoke, and bilge water — the fragrance 
of the last predominating as the profounder abysms of 
the hold were reached. 

The boy who comes from home to the Naval Academy 
of to-day steps into an environment of luxury as com- 
pared with that which welcomed the green " younker " 
of sixty or seventy years ago. There was always twi- 
light in the steerage of a receiving ship, and dirt and cock- 
roaches galore, besides a general chaos ot furniture and 
personal belongings, because every one of its inhabitants 
expected soon to be transferred to a sea-going vessel, 
and hence deemed it needless to settle down and be 
orderly. The older midshipmen were rough, riotous, 
and, to the newcomer, merciless. If he did not have a 
strong arm and a ready fist, woe betide him ; for nothing 
but the law of might makes right prevailed. 

Midshipman Life in the Old Navy 53 

At first, the life was one of unalloyed wretchedness 
mingled with constant surprises. An old midshipman, 
who has put his experience in print, says that his first 
day caused him feverish excitement, because the noise 
and confusion about the decks led him to believe that 
the ship was continually catching fire, and that he re- 
peatedly rushed terror-stricken from below in order to 
save himself. Another source of dismay, which he 
pathetically notes, was his hammock, with which he 
made his first acquaintance before it was unlashed, and 
thereupon concluded that the only wa)- to sleep in, or 
rather on, it was by straddling it. He thought so 
seriously over this during his first watch that when he 
went below, in order to turn in, he had made up his 
mind to resign at once. Fortunately, his hammock 
had, meanwhile, been prepared for him and swung; so 
that he perceived his error, and reconsidered his deter- 

The older officers of the Navy still recall the stories 
about the greenhorns which their seniors used to tell, 
years ago, around the " smokers' lantern." There was 
one about a youth always described as " Beverly," who 
hailed from the sunny South. He arrived on board the 
" guardo " on a cold winter's night when she was moored 
to the Cob Dock in the New York navy yard, attired in 
full majesty of cocked hat and dirk. The hatch covers 
and tarpaulins were all on, in order to keep the ship as 
warm as possible below, and Beverly, who seems to have 
been put immediately to stand the first night watch, was 
instructed not to let the men come_ on the spar-deck. 
So he marched up and down alongside the main-hatch. 

54 The United States Naval Academy 

It happened, however, that the quartermaster, who had 
gone off duty at eight o'clock and was in his hammock, 
suddenly remembered that he had forgotten to tell his 
relief the state of the tide, so without waiting to attire 
himself he ran up on deck in a breezy costume, only to 
encounter Beverly, who immediately assumed his pres- 
ence to be gross disobedience of orders, yelled " Mutiny," 
and attacked him with his drawn dirk. The quarter- 
master made for the forecastle with Beverly in pursuit, 
but unfortunately tripped over a coil of rope, so that 
Beverly not only tumbled over him but scratched him 
with his dirk as he fell. The word at once was passed 
that there was " a mad midshipman on deck," and a 
general exodus to the place where Beverly and the dis- 
robed and much-affrighted quartermaster were rolling 
over one another ensued. Quiet was not restored until 
the first lieutenant hauled Beverly off his victim by the 
legs, confiscated his dirk, and sent him below under 

After a brief stay on the receiving ship, the new mid- 
shipman was usually sent to a cruising vessel, most com- 
monly to one which happened to come to the navy yard 
for repairs or to make changes in her crew. Then he 
would be obliged to undergo a new course of torment 
from the older members of the steerage mess. Some- 
times, for example, he would find his hammock sus- 
pended by a slippery hitch which would suddenly lower 
his feet to the deck below after he had become comfort- 
ably ensconced for the night ; or the foot clews would be 
partly cut, an operation called " sawing the bed-post," 
and intended to produce the result which has already 

Midshipman Life in the Old Navy 55 

been stated ; or he would be lashed up in his hammock 
of a morning and left until somebody was considerate 
enough to cast him loose. Occasionally, as a variant of 
this, he might retire to his hammock at night to find 
some one already securely lashed up in it, the " some 
one," on further investigation, proving to be the cap- 
tain's goat. This was before the days of condensed 
milk, and a goat was often carried on sea-going ships to 
supply the captain's private dairy. One of the most 
common of his initial experiences was to be hastily 
despatched to the first lieutenant with a lurid report 
concerning some dreadful misdeed of Charles Noble; 
only to encounter the grins of the bystanders, and a 
solemn "wigging" from his superior for greenness in 
not knowing that this was the time-honored cognomen of 
the galley smoke-pipe. 

The number of midshipmen on board depended upon 
the size of the ship. The Brandywine in 1825, for 
example, carried twenty-five; four being detailed for 
watch on the forecastle, three being master mates of 
decks, — the duties of which will be hereafter explained, 
— one being stationed in each of the three tops, and the 
rest assigned as " gentlemen of the watch " or assistants 
to the lieutenant in charge. That was rather an extreme 
number, yet fifty-two years later the Franklin frigate 
carried twenty-seven. 

They were not always berthed in the cockpit, as that 
delectable abode was frequently reserved for a select 
coterie made up of the schoolmaster (before he became 
dignified by the title of professor), the assistant sur- 
geons, the purser's and captain's clerks, and sometimes 

56 The United States Naval Academy 

the flag lieutenant, who existed there as happily and 
pleasantly as human beings could be expected to live 
when six feet under water, withimthe nethermost bowels 
of the ship, and having immediately over their heads 
the wild pandemonium of the midshipmen's mess. 

The youngsters lived in the steerage, or, as it was 
sometimes called, " gun-room," a section of the berth- 
deck just forward the ward-room. Fore-and-aft parti- 
tions divided the steerage into three parts, lying respect- 
ively on the starboard and port sides of the vessel, with 
the " country," or space amidships, into which, of 
course, the hatchways above opened. Directly against 
the sides of the ship inside the wing-steerages were built 
small lockers, and below these extended a long settee or 
transom. Below the transom were drawers correspond- 
ing in place to the lockers above. In these lockers and 
drawers the midshipmen stowed their clothing, sometimes 
a difficult matter, because the cubic contents of each 
man's locker was small. The general rule, therefore, 
was to stuff as much into the locker space as possible 
and then force the door shut by lying down and bracing 
the feet against it. The principal difficulty about this 
was that when the locker door was opened by some one 
not knowing its particular stowage, the contents were 
apt to jump out jack-in-the-box fashion. 

In one of the steerages, sometimes in the " country," 
when the arrangement of hatchways and ladders therein 
permitted, was the mess-table, firmly secured to the 
deck. As many camp-stools were provided as there were 
members of the mess. The toilet arrangements were 
primitive, and rarely consisted of more than one or two 

Midshipman Life in the Old Navy 57 

rude washstands with tin basins, into which water was 
poured from a deck bucket as the youngsters performed 
their ablutions in turn. Sleeping was done entirely in 
hammocks suspended from hooks on the beams. Each, 
midshipman had his own hammock man, or " cot-boy," 
whom he chose from the crew, and who usually received 
in return for lashing and stowing the hammock in the 
morning and getting it from the nettings at night, and 
scrubbing it when the hammocks of the men were 
washed, an extra glass of grog, and after grog was abol- 
ished, two or three dollars a, month and an agreed- 
amount of salt-water soap and plug tobacco. The ham- 
mocks of the midshipmen were similar to those of the 
crew, but had a mattress and much more bedding than 
Jacky was permitted to indulge in. When they were 
swung in their places, they were extended by cross-sticks 
or spreaders so as to make broad and comfortable beds- 
of them — another luxury quite out of the question for 
Jacky, who, owing to the restricted space of the berth- 
deck, where the hammocks of the crew are swung at 
night, was generally limited to an area of but eighteen 
inches in width. 

On top of the lockers, there was usually an indiscrimi- 
nate mixture of clothes, sextant-boxes, books, swords, 
boots, and pretty much everything which could not be 
jammed into the closets. At the end of the row there 
was frequently a space, generally known as the " pea- 
jacket hole," into which everybody contributed his 
pea-jacket when not in use, and from which everybody 
extracted a pea-jacket when he wanted one, quite regard- 
less of individual ownership. 

58 The United States Naval Academy 

The old midshipmen of the " twenties " and "thirties " 
used to carry this community of garments to a ludicrous 
extreme. When any one of them wanted to go on shore 
he generally supplied himself by promiscuous borrowing, 
getting a coat from one, a hat from another, boots from 
a third, and so on. This was done not from choice alto- 
gether, but from motives of economy. The youngsters 
discovered that their pay was not enough to warrant 
everybody having a full outfit, so they frequently ac- 
quired only just enough garments to let, say, a third of 
their number go ashore, properly attired, to a party or 
similar function. It was generally understood that no 
invitation that included the whole, or even the majority, 
of the steerage mess could be accepted, because there 
were never enough clothes suitable for a festive occasion 
to go around. 

Several secretaries of the navy unavailingly fulminated 
against this community of apparel. Secretary Southard, 
in 1825, expressly ordered Commodore Warrington to 
put a stop to the practice. " The habit of borrowing 
money and articles of clothing," solemnly says Secretary 
Woodbury, in 1831, " produces improvidence and un- 
cleanliness, and ought to be repressed as far as it can be 
done in the proper exercise of authority and advice." 
When the Potomac went to Quallah Battoo in 1831, her 
orders contained a special paragraph about it. 

Light in the steerage came down through the large 
hatchways and through the air ports in the side of the 
vessel. In the old ships, the air ports were mere open- 
ings closed by a heavy bolt of oak which the carpenter 
calked as he did all the other ports in the berth-deck and 

Midshipman Life in the Old Navy 59 

ward-room before the ship went to sea ; but in the newer 
ships glass deadlights, such as are still used, were sup- 
plied, and the steerage was then fairly well illuminated. 
At night there were swinging oil lamps, and fixed deck 
lanterns, by the light of which one could see to write a 
letter if a place could be found not occupied by a ham- 
mock, but the midshipmen rarely used the steerage as a 
sitting-room evenings on vessels larger than a sloop-of- 
war, preferring to gather around their "smokers' lantern" 
at the extreme forward end of the starboard side of the 
gun-deck; the commissioned officers similarly congrega- 
ting on the port side. When the steerage was of necessity 
the meeting-place at night, the swinging of hammocks 
directly over the mess-table was prohibited, and all hands 
would gather around it and spin yarns or tell stories. 
The latter were hardly adapted to drawing-room uses, 
but there was a rough sort of supervision exercised, and 
when one of the " oldsters " jabbed a sheath-knife into 
the table {Maxima debetur puero reverentid) the small 
youngsters went on deck to observe the weather. 

As a rule, however, the ward-room officers disapproved 
of the gathering of the midshipmen in the steerage. 
They were noisy, and disturbed the sleep of the lieuten- 
ants off watch, or set up opposition shouts and story- 
telling to that which went on in the ward-room. They 
had also the persistent habit of" bulkheading," which 
meant saying savage things of any officer who had fallen 
under their displeasure^ which, of course, they would not 
dare to do openly, but which it was intended nevertheless 
he should hear through the thin bulkhead or partition 
which separated the ward-room from the steerage. 

6o The United States Naval Academy 

In winter time or in cold latitudes the sailing ships were 
very uncomfortable, for they had no regular heating ap- 
paratus. The crew would keep as close to the galley 
range as possible, and in the cabin and ward-room there 
might be small stoves, but the steerage contrivance was 
usually a bucket of sand with a hot twenty-four-pound 
shot buried in it, as many midshipmen inserting their 
feet into the bucket as possible. 

Ships that had been long in commission, especially on 
tropical stations, were generally alive with cockroaches — 
which were rather tolerated, as there was a theory that 
they drove out worse vermin. Rats there were in abun- 
dance, which nobody minded. 

The character of the steerage food depended upon a 
variety of fortuitous circumstances. Mess bills were 
usually collected once a month, always as soon as pos- 
sible after pay day, and for perhaps two weeks there- 
after the youngsters, if in port, would luxuriate in fresh 
meat, vegetables, and " soft-tack"; but by the end of 
that time the caterer would begin to discover that he had 
under-estimated the voracity of the general appetite, and 
slowly but surely the steerage bill of fare would begin to 
show a greater proportion of Uncle Sam's pork and " salt 
horse." Much discontent would then appear, the growls 
would become fiercer and fiercer, and, finally, just at the 
time when a rebellion and overthrow of the caterer 
seemed inevitable, pay day would come around again, 
and the mess would be appeased, if especially violent, by 
offerings of confectionery or even wine. 

Some of the attempts at housekeeping by the young- 
sters were exceedingly funny— none more so, I fancy, 

Midshipman Life in the Old Navy 6i 

than those described by Admiral Phelps of the ward-room 
and steerage caterers to supply their respective messes 
on the Boston when she was fitting out for what proved 
to be her last cruise, in 1846. The usual collection of 
funds was made, the caterers duly appointed and sent 
ashore to make purchases, while the other officers re- 
mained on duty on board ready to receive the marketing. 
On the first day all that arrived from the steerage caterer 
were three gallons of whiskey, six jars of pickled oysters, 
and a few pounds of crackers. The mess rebelled at 
once in the face of such diet, and sent to the ward-room 
to borrow something more solid for dinner. The ward- 
room replied that its receipts to date were ten gallons of 
whiskey, twelve jars of pickled oysters, a box of crackers, 
and a piece of cheese. Both messes subsisted on this 
bill of fare for the first twenty-four hours ; also for the 
second similar interval, nothing more meanwhile having 
come off, and the caterers having disappeared. On the 
third day some packages arrived, and were hailed with 
shouts of delight. Those belonging to the steerage were 
at once opened. The contents, besides more whiskey 
and more pickled oysters, consisted of twelve dozen 
bottles of pepper, twelve dozen bottles of sweet oil, 
twelve dozen bottles of salt, twelve dozen bottles of 
Worcestershire sauce, and twelve dozen jars of pickles. 
The ward-room inventory was the same. Then both 
messes solemnly convened and " broke " both of the 
caterers, selected new ones, and investigated. Ulti- 
mately it was discovered that out of a total of $1200 col- 
lected, over $1100 had been spent for liquors and wines, 
and the rest for condiments. All of the provisions were 

62 The United States Naval Academy 

shipped back ashore, and after many stormy interviews 
with the purveyors, the messes finally got something 
more substantial to appease their appetites. 

That, however, was port routine. At sea the collapse 
always occurred after the first two days out. Invariably 
the caterer would be severely lectured as to the necessity 
of laying in stores, and regularly he would affirm that he 
had done so — and, just as regularly, they would be de- 
voured within the first forty-eight hours. Then the fare, 
especially if the ship had been fitted out for a long cruise, 
was apt to be pretty bad, — hard-tack infested with 
weevils (they used to improve it by baking it until crisp, 
weevils and all), beef, tough and indigestible, but gener- 
ally sweet enough, — thanks to the brine in which it was 
soaked, — and squashy rice. The pork and the bean soup 
were generally rather better, and an experienced caterer 
could often get up a " scouse " (hard-tack softened with 
water and baked in a pan with plenty of pork fat), or 
even venture upon saleratus biscuit occasionally. There 
were other compounds invented by the blue-jackets to 
which the steerage mess, when hard pressed for variety, 
would take refuge: such as " dunderfunk," which, like 
scouse, was made of pounded hard-tack, but mixed with 
beef instead of pork, fat, and plenty of molasses, and 
then baked ; or " burgoo," which is merely oat-meal por- 
ridge overboiled; and various mysterious combinations 
known as " dough - boys," " lob-dominion," " skilla 
gallee " (or " skilli-gallilee "), and " dog's body." But- 
ter, when they had any, they generally designated by 
the nautical name for all grease, to wit, " slush " ; and, 
of course, " soft-tack " or " soft Tommy " meant " shore 

Midshipman Life in the Old Navy 63 

bread," and not crackers or " hard-tack." Besides, on 
Sundays, there was always that toothsome dainty, 
" plum duff," a flour pudding with fat in it, and about 
as heavy as so much lead, but stuffed full of raisins 
and eaten with plenty of New Orleans molasses. Its 
filling quality left nothing to be desired, whatever else 
one might say about it. Coffee, cocoa, or tea was made 
as the mess preferred. The older midshipmen drew their 
grog ration, and invented various ingenious ways of get- 
ting that of the younger ones when the captain pater- 
nally interposed his veto on the latter indulging in spirits, 
however much diluted. Ultimately, however, after much 
consideration and after getting voluminous reports from 
the principal navy surgeons, the Government, in 1842, 
stopped the grog of the midshipmen altogether. This 
was long before the grog ration was abolished throughout 
the Navy. 

From the author's *' Shakings," 1867. 


Wherein we Learn more about the Sea-Life of the Old " Younker " 
and Join him in his Amusements and his Songs 

IN the old ships the curious custom often prevailed of 
fixing the hour for dinner according to rank, — the 
loftier the position, the later the hour. The com- 
modore, accordingly, dined at five o'clock in the after- 
noon, the captain at three, the ward-room at two, and the 
midshipmen at the same time (noon) as the crew. 

As for the table furniture of the midshipmen's mess, it 
could not be called luxurious, even when the members 
were not reduced to the necessity of drinking soup in 
turn out of a cigar-box, as Rear-Admiral Franklin records. 
They usually had what was once a castor, disposed purely 
for ornamental purposes, for the bottles were always 
broken, in the middle of the table; a collection of china, 
all more or less nicked and cracked ; a disheartened coffee- 
pot, which usually looked as if it had been trodden on, 
and table knives hacked into hand-saws. The tablecloth 
— a port luxury — was liberally patched by the sailmaker. 
The attendants were ship's boys, — often negroes, — whose 
lives were simply inconceivable. I shall not attempt to 
describe them — no one but a Dante could do so; and 
yet I doubt if Dante himself would ever quite appreciate 


The Sea-Life of the Old " Younker " 65 

the terror and anguish which fills the African soul when 
a gang of conscienceless imps suddenly decides to ad- 
minister correction by shying tin pie-plates, edge on, 
at the delinquent's shins— a favorite mode of summary 

At sea, the midshipmen were never allowed to go into 
more than four watches, and very often they were re- 
quired to stand in three. In the latter case there is a 
turn of watch duty during some part of every night ; in 
the forrher, every fourth night is an unbroken " all night 
in." They could always be relied upon, however, to 
exercise a singular ingenuity in splitting up watches, so 
as to get as much time off duty as possible ; and that was 
one of the numerous instances where the first lieutenant 
was compelled to keep his wits pitted against theirs to 
catch them. This habit prevailed even up to a late 
period. I can recall an instance where an excellent 
executive officer having omitted to mention into just 
how many watches the steerage should divide itself, it 
proceeded to organize into no less than twenty-seven — 
that being the total number of midshipmen on the ship. 
The agreeable effect was to require each individual to ■ 
stand but one watch in four days. The plan worked 
admirably for some time, but when it was discovered 
they all went into three watches, and stayed there for 
many months. 

In port, the midshipmen generally arranged their 
hours of duty so that they could get one day ashore out 
of three ; but this was often materially shortened by care- 
ful first lieutenants, who limited their liberty to begin 
after morning " quarters," and to end at sundown. 

66 The United States Naval Academy 

Nearly all the old works on seamanship and every 
" guide for the young officer " specify with great detail 
the duties of a midshipman, but probably no midshipman 
ever existed who performed them as they are laid down 
— especially when the regulations did not enforce them. 
At sea, his principal station was on the lee side of the 
quarter-deck, and his particular province to see that the 
orders of the officer of the deck were promptly obeyed 
by the watch. During the day, this merely involved 
making the boatswain's mates drive the men to the ropes, 
and occasionally bawling, " All ready, sir," when the 
order of execution was to come from the watch officer, 
or else adjuring the men to " haul away " or " pull to- 
gether," if left to carry out the direction alone. 

At night, when the men, excepting those on lookout, 
were usually permitted, if the weather were good, to lie 
around the deck asleep, the task of the " gentleman of 
the watch " was less easy, since he had to " rout them 
out " from under the boats or boom covers or any other 
secluded places in which they might conceal themselves. 
That was disagreeable, especially when you wanted to 
sleep yourself, and had acquired the art of doing so while 
standing up, or sitting apparently upright on an arm- 
chest, together also with an astonishing ability to give an 
immediate and proper response to a call from the watch 
officer before you got your eyes open. 

I doubt if any one ever rivalled a midshipman in that 
peculiar capacity for standing watch in a semi-cataleptic 
state, or, any how, with one half of his dual brain peace- 
fully slumbering; or in the selective skill with which he 
would discover a comfortable couch in things apparently 

The Sea-Life of the Old " Younker " 67 

the last adapted to that purpose. Long after the carron- 
ades of our old ships had been proved to have neither 
range, penetration, nor capacity for hitting anything with 
their shot, they retained a unique popularity among the 
midshipmen, because the slides upon which they were 
mounted were so convenient for going to sleep on. So 
were the slides of ii-inch pivot guns, in later days. 

A complaisant ofificer of the deck, when the weather 
was fine and the ship at anchor, would sometimes send 
half of the midshipmen of the watch below to " watch 
the cable," — which meant turning into their hammocks. 
When this was prohibited, a favorite expedient of the 
youngsters was to take turns in getting into the long 
troughs above the bulwarks in which the hammocks are 
stowed in the daytime, — termed the " nettings," — pull- 
ing over the tarpaulin covers so as to insure concealment, 
and then going immediately to sleep. This, however, 
always involved the posting of sentinels, whose duty it 
was to keep an eye on the officer of the deck, and to 
alarm the sleepers in event of a sudden call. 

During the principal evolutions of the ship, two mid- 
shipmen were usually stationed in each of the tops. It 
was their duty to repair to their stations in advance of 
the men when the hands were called to loose or furl sail, 
to send up or down yards, or to do whatever else was re- 
quired, and to direct the work of the men on the yards, 
making them keep silence, lay out or in quickly at the 
order, handle the sail rapidly in furling, trice up and 
lower the studding-sail booms at the command, and so 
on. In reefing they remained in the slings of the topsail- 
yards and drove the men out on the yard-arms. If the 

68 The United States Naval Academy 

men hesitated — as in a storm — the midshipmen would 
often lead the way, and take the most dangerous places. 
When the ship had an overplus of midshipmen, one was 
kept on night watch at sea in each top, and he invariably 
went to sleep — since there was usually a Jacky or two 
aloft who could be sternly ordered to keep a sharp ear for 
hails from the deck. 

In port, the midshipmen who were off watch and not 
entitled to "day's liberty " were obliged to stand by for 
boat duty — no boat leaving the ship without a midship- 
man in charge, who was answerable for her appearance, 
the management of the boat's crew, and the correct per- 
formance of whatever task was assigned. Some young- 
ster who had enjoyed an " all night in" was generally 
obliged to get up at five A.M. and take charge of the 
market boat, which conveys the stewards and other pur- 
veyors ashore to make their purchases for the day. At 
the present time there is nothing especially arduous 
about boat duty, since the men do not habitually desert 
whenever they get a chance ; but in the old Navy, Jacky 
and the midshipman waged a perpetual struggle, the one 
to run away at the first opportunity, the other to pre- 
vent his doing so. Not that the latter ever cared a straw 
in the abstract whether Jacky deserted or not, but be- 
cause certain retribution in the form of a stoppage of his 
liberty, several hours at the masthead, extra watch, or 
some other penalty which the first lieutenant might select 
as appropriate to the misdeed, awaited him on board 
should he return with any of his boat's crew missing. 
Nor was there any particular reason why the enlisted 
men should have had the mania to desert which for 

The Sea-Life of the Old " Younker " 69 

years they seemed to possess, especially when they often 
left behind considerable sums due them on the pay- 
master's books. But desert they would ; and as the boat 
drew alongside the landing, you would see the youngster 
rise, draw his sword, and order the boat backed in stern 
foremost, so that he could leap out first and grimly stand 
guard ready to impale, if need be, the first blue-jacket 
who ventured to leave his thwart without permission. 

At quarters, at the guns, the midshipman acted as an 
assistant to the ofificer commanding the division, seeing 
to it that the men promptly and properly manned the 
several tackles for running the guns in and out, that 
boarders, pikemen, sail-trimmers, or firemen, as the case 
might be, promptly responded when called away, and 
that the powder-boys got a proper supply of cartridges, 
and did not indulge in fights among themselves at the 
powder-scuttles. The midshipmen of the division were 
also charged with the duty of overhauling the men's 
clothes once a week or so, and seeing that they were in 
order and properly mended, — an attention, by the way, 
which they very seldom gave to their own. 

On large vessels it was customary to detail five of the 
oldest midshipmen as " master's mates." Three were 
usually assigned to stand watch on the forecastle, as 
assistants to the ofificer of the deck. They looked after 
the management of the sails on the foremast and head 
booms, and were especially charged with the heaving of 
the log to determine the ship's speed. The remaining 
two were the master's mates of the berth-deck and hold, 
who stood no watch, but superintended the expenditure 
of provisions, water, and spirits, made the rough copy of 

70 The United States Naval Academy 

the ship's log from the log slate, and were responsible 
for the cleanliness of the lower portions of the ship. 
Sometimes there was also a master's mate of the gun- 
deck, who kept order among the men thereon, attended to 
the issuing of provisions, and was especially required to 
supervise the " splicing of the main brace," as the serv- 
ing out of the grog was termed. 

On small ships, any of the midshipmen might be en- 
trusted with the care of the forecastle under the lieuten- 
ant of the watch, or even put in command of the deck 
itself in port or at sea when the weather was fine and 
settled. On such vessels, commissioned ofificers frater- 
nized with them, or, at most, no great distinction because 
of rank was drawn. On flagships espefcially, and ships- 
of-the-line and frigates, the separation was strongly 
marked, the ward-room ofificers having practically no in- 
tercourse with the steerage ofificers, other than official, 
when aboard ship, and always maintaining a haughty 
reserve when off duty ashore. 

The captain, however, could unbend, and used to do 
so regularly at intervals, by ceremoniously inviting the 
midshipmen of the morning watch to breakfast with him 
in his cabin, or he might single out some victim standing 
by for boat duty to dine with him in the afternoon. 
That was an awful and solemn occasion for the young- 
ster, who generally maintained a sombre gravity of de- 
portment, as, on the whole, about the safest thing to be 
done in the circumstances, and permitted his commander 
to do all the talking to any one else who might be present 
at the festive board. If he were experienced, he would 
retire promptly upon being requested to ascertain the 

The Sea-Life of the Old "Younker" 71 

direction of the wind or of the ship's head, and return 
with a word of report, and then instantly take his final 
departure. That was the etiquette of getting rid of him. 

On board ship, the captain is lord of the time, and 
whatever the sun may have to say on the subject is of no 
consequence until the cabin formally approves. In the 
old ships the sailing-master used to " take the sun " at 
midday, and when his sextant indicated that that lumin- 
ary had reached its greatest altitude, he would turn to 
the officer of the watch, touch his cap, and report noon. 
Thereupon the watch officer would direct the midship- 
man to go to the cabin and inform the captain of the 
suggestion of the sailing-master. Then the colloquy 
would be : 

Mid. " Twelve o'clock reported, sir." 

CaPT. " Make it so, sir." {Exit Mid.) 

Mid. {to deck officer.") " Captain says make it so, 

Officer of Deck {to Quartermaster.) " Strike 
eight bells ! ' ' 

Pretty much the same observances are gone through 
now, except that the sailing-master is replaced by the 
navigator, who always ranks the deck officer, and there- 
fore does not touch his cap first. 

This was one of the ceremonies in which the very green 
youngster frequently came to grief by informing the cap- 
tain, not that twelve o'clock had been reported, but that 

" It is twelve o'clock, sir." 

To which the reply generally was : 

" Oh, is it ? Since when, sir, did you assume com- 
mand of this ship ?" 

72 The United States Naval Academy 

And then followed the usual order to go out and do it 
over again, and not to forget another time. 

They were tremendous functionaries, the old commo- 
dores and captains of our Navy. A retired rear-admiral 
not long ago naively confessed that the mere name of 
Commodore Ap. Catesby Jones still frightened him. 
Some of the captains were even more awe-inspiring des- 
pots than the commodores. There is a tradition that 
Senior Flag-Ofificer Charles Stewart .was once so bullied 
by his flag captain, that when he wanted to go a-fishing 
in his barge he did not dare appear on the quarter-deck 
of his own flagship in his fishing clothes, or have the 
boat called to the gangway, but after she was manned 
caused her to be dropped to the hanging Jacob's ladder 
which depended from his cabin window at the stern, 
and down this he and his midshipman aide (and abettor) 
scrambled, while the captain, with folded arms, silently 
glared at him over the taffrail. 

And yet that same captain did not escape the jokes of 
his youngsters. It is said that once, on a Sunday-morn- 
ing inspection, he found the precincts of the galley de- 
cidedly grimy. Thereupon, after bestowing upon the 
midshipman in charge of that part of the deck a merci- 
less scolding, he ordered the youngster to give everything 
in the vicinity a double coat of whitewash. 

Everything, sir ? " meekly inquired the midshipman. 

" Did n't I speak plainly enough, sir, or are you deaf ? 
Yes, sir, everything, everything," replied the great man. 

" Very good, sir." 

Next morning the captain had no milk for his tea. 
" The goat would not give any," reported the steward. 

The Sea-Life of the Old " Younker " 73 

' ' Go get that goat, and bring her here, ' ' ordered the 

Then fell the avalanche, for, instead of a glossy black 
animal, there came aft one of snowy whiteness. The 
youngster had been ordered to whitewash everything. 
The goat was stabled in the " manger " at the forward 
end of the gun-deck near the galley. He had duly 
given her two coats of whitewash, and Nanny mutinied 
at once. That youngster went under arreSt and stayed 
there until the captain's sense of humor got the better 
of his annoyance. 

In common with the other warrant officers, the mid- 
shipmen used the port gangway in coming on board or 
leaving the ship, and never the starboard, which is sacred 
to commissioned rank; and if they came alongside at 
night they answered hails from the ship with a shout of 
" No, no," and not " Hello," which belongs to the 
Jackies, nor " Aye, aye," which the ward-room officers 
alone return, nor the name of the ship, which is only for 
her captain, and of course not " Fleet " (" Flag" nowa- 
days), which nobody but the commodore dares reply. 

So far as amusements were concerned, the old-time 
youngsters had very few. When they got " liberty" 
ashore, they frequented the cafes and saloons, and dis- 
ported themselves about the same as any boys of eighteen 
or thereabouts would do when practically free from re- 
straint. They certainly could not indulge in very expen- 
sive luxuries on their pay of nineteen dollars a month 
and one ration; and their shore enjoyment on "day's 
liberty ' ' was always tempered with the carking know- 
ledge that when they returned on board at night there 

74 The United States Naval Academy 

was a dreary four hours' watch waiting for them, no 
matter how sleepy or tired they might be. 

Probably the place which came nearer to the old mid- 
shipman's idea of Paradise was Port Mahon, on the island 
of Minorca, a favorite rendezvous for our ships in the 
Mediterranean for many years, — Mahon, whither Jack 
believed everything afloat in the Mediterranean finally 
drifted, and embalmed his superstition in the doggerel 
which all thd Navy knows : 

" Off Cape de Gat 

I lost my hat, 
And where do you think I found it ? 

At Port Mahon, 

Behind a stone, 
With all the girls around it " ; 

Mahon of the red-legged partridges and " monkey soup," 
and the illimitable family bearing the name of Orfela; 
Mahon of the toothsome datefish and the succulent 
" salsiche " sausage; Mahon, that was whitewashed all 
over every Saturday afternoon ; Mahon, which stabbed 
Jack Patterson, sailing-master, and has guarded the 
secret of the crime these sixty years ; Mahon, where even 
midshipmen could borrow money and yet be prevented 
from paying the debt with the maintop bowline, which 
means not at all ; Mahon of the best nougat in the world, 
and of other confections dear to the sweet tooth of 
youth ; Mahon of Conchita and Mercedes, and — but ask 
any of the old gallants on the retired list if you want 
more. Ask them to tell you of the masquerades and the 
fandangoes, and show you the steps of the rigadon. 

The Sea-Life of the Old " Younker " 75 

Did not Andrea Doria say of it, in bad metre but good 

" Junio, Julio, Agosto y Puerto Mahon 

Los mejores puertos en el Meditferraneano son " 

and he only meant that it is a safe harbor, which is true, 
since it is almost an inland lake. But our old midship- 
man knew of places there — not like " Mother Ryley's," 
or " Codfish Bill's," or the " Jack-knife Hotel," or the 
" Sailor's Last Push," or the " House of Blazes," where 
the blue-jackets went, — but quieter retreats where he 
could gamble away his last copper at mont6, and come 
back aboard singing, 

" So of all the ports I have been in 
Mahon is the best of them all ; 
There 's no other place that so quickly 

Will prove a poor sailor's downfall " — 

or perhaps never return at all, but just lie quietly look- 
ing up at the sky with sightless eyes and with a mess- 
mate's bullet in his heart, at the " Golden Farm " or 
" Hospital Island," where the duels were fought. Per- 
haps it were better to have ended that way than to have 
become one of the wrecks, of which Mahon made too 
many, among the careless youngsters of the Navy, years 
and years ago. 

It does not do so any more. 4t is quiet now and 
stupid ; a good place to lie at anchor while catching -up 
with overdrawn pay on the books, because there is 
nothing especially attractive on shore and no temptation 
worth mentioning to spend money. 

How the youngsters of the Navy did lord it over that 

76 The United States Naval Academy 

place half a century ago! Imagine the commander-in- 
chief of the European squadron of to-day gravely issuing 
an order, as did the commander-in-chief of 1839, to scold 
the midshipmen of the fleet for racing and galloping 
through the streets of the city, "to the extreme of nearly 
trampling upon the late Governor Don Manuel Obregon 
on the road to Georgetown. ' ' Of course the town Became 
Americanized. In the same year above mentioned, the 
Secretary of the Navy found it necessary formally to 
prohibit marriage with the fair daughters of Mahon on 
account of the international difficulties incident to large 
families of mixed Spanish and Navy-American blood be- 
coming dependent on United States pension legislation. 
On board ship there was no amusement for the mid- 
shipmen save such as they made themselves. There 
were always yarns to be told around the smokers' lantern, 
up forward ; not new yarns, for they gave out, as a rule, 
before the ship got off soundings, but old barnacle- 
encrusted yarns told by a 

" melodist unwearied 
Forever piping songs forever new " 

to listeners as tireless and as appreciative as those who 
had laughed at Squire Hardcastle's famous story of 
"The Grouse in the Gun-Room" for "these twenty 

And they were often such exasperatingly pointless 
stories, gathered no one knows how, and repeated from 
sheer force of habit. Admiral Ammen cites two of this 
kind, which are typical. The first, of a highly moral 
and edifying character, is about a rude boy who was 

The Sea-Life of the Old "Younker" ']'] 

found on the top of an apple tree by the owner of the 
orchard, who desired him to come down, but the boy 
would not. Then the old man threw a few tufts of grass 
at him, which only made the boy laugh. " Very well," 
said the old man, "if neither kind words nor gentle deeds 
will bring you down, we will see what virtue there is in 
these. " So he picked up stones and threw them at the 
boy, which soon made the young sauce-box descend and 
beg the owner's pardon. 

Just what the midshipmen on the Vandalia in 1838 
saw in this tale, pilfered, as it was, from Webster's Spell- 
ing-Book, that could in any wise be called entertaining, is 
obscure; nor is any light shed on the subject by a con- 
sideration of its companion anecdote, which invariably 
went with it, as follows : 

There was a purser in the British navy who met a 
midshipman walking on the island of Jamaica. The 
purser was described as a man with two eyes and the 
merest apology for an abdomen, and the midshipman as 
a great burly fellow " three sheets in the wind." On 
passing the purser, the midshipman paid not the least 
regard to his presence, whereupon the purser took him 
to task for not saluting. The midshipman eyed the 
purser with contempt from head to foot, and then hit 

him in the eye, remarking, " Take that, you old sea 

grocer ! ' ' That was all of it. Inquiry invariably followed 
as to whether the purser lost his eye, or indeed whether 
the loss of an eye by a purser would necessarily lead to 
the formation of a larger abdomen, and there were also 
several questions based on the occurrence taking place in 
Jamaica ; but the narrator never answered them. 

78 The United States Naval Academy 

I am inclined to think that perhaps the wiseacres of 
the Navy Department recognized positive ill effects from 
these deadly yarns ; at all events, it is difficult otherwise 
to interpret the Secretary's official instructions to Com- 
modore Downes when the Potomac sailed on her famous 
voyage to Quallah Battoo, in especially ordering him to 
enjoin on " all grades of officers not to relate anecdotes 
which do no credit to the individual members of the 
profession nor the character of the service. 

Finally, when the stories of the steerage became un- 
endurable, there was always the resource of listening to 
the men's yarns, which the youngster could do if he were 
on watch ; but then he would generally hear an instal- 
ment of that never-beginning and never-ending tale, 
" Jack and the King." There was no plot to it, and 
everybody could tell it because every one " made it up 
as he went along," and save that it dealt with the ad- 
ventures of Jack and a king who joined company with 
him for some occult reason, the yarns told under the 
same name by different improvisers had no possible 
relation to one another. 

Then there were the songs — real sea-songs, not 
" shanties," those mere working rhythms descended 
from far-off antiquity which never had a moment's place 
on a man-of-war except in the alleged sea-novel. Jacky 
never sheeted home topsails on a frigate in his life to 
howls of " I wish I was in Mobile Bay, Way hay knock 
a man down," or " Shenandoah 's a rolling river," 
or " We 're homeward bound with a roaring breeze " ; 
nor did any one on board war vessels sing these things. 
Neither do I count the spurious sea-songs of Dibdin, 

The Sea-Life of the Old " Younker " n 

paid ;^200 a year by the Admiralty to write them, in 
order to veil the horrors of the press-gang, which were 
not sung by sailors except on the stage, and which 
Thackeray, and after him Gilbert, have so well parodied. 
Nor yet such mythological and allegorical efforts of the 
laboring muse as 

" O'er the mountains the sun of our fame was declining, 
And on Tethy's billowy breast 
The cold orb had reposed, all his splendor declining, 
Bedimmed by the mists of the west " — 

which was written for a " sea-song," but which seems 
better adapted to the needs of a congress of professors 
of rhetoric. 

Of the songs of English origin, the prime favorite oi 
the steerage was often the "Mermaid," beginning, 

" On Friday morning we set sail, 
It was not far from land, 
Oh, there I spied a pretty maid 

With a comb and a glass in her hand. 
The stormy winds did blow 
And the raging seas did roar 
While we poor sailors went to the top 
And the land-lubbers laid below ' ' — 

and ending with 

" Three times round went our gallant ship 
And three times round went she, 
Three times round went our gallant ship, 

Then she sank to the bottom of the sea." 

Then there was "Sailing down on the High Barbaric," 
which is also of British origin, and the traditional " Sweet- 
hearts and Wives," which is a toast and not a song. 

8o The United States Naval Academy 

although some verses were written on the subject and 
sung during the " thirties." The first stanza runs thus: 

" Come send round the can though the last of our lives, 
And this night we will drink to our sweethearts and wives, 
And pledge them the warmer and dream of them more 
The farther we sail from our dear native shore." 

As the other four stanzas are even worse, they are 

Most of the American songs were written shortly after 
the war of 1812. They were, as a rule, too " spread- 
eagle," too figurative, too turgid to appeal to any one 
even if they were sung to the old tunes. Two, called 
respectively, Lawrence's "Tid-re-I " and Bainbridge's 
" Tid-re-I," were descriptive of the sea-fights, but con- 
tained the usual spoken patter between the stanzas, and 
too evidently had their origin in the stage sailor with 
the blue jacket and shiny hat. 

The songs, however, which were most sung were "The 
Constitution and the Guerrifere," and after 1840 "The 
Roaring Brandywine. ' ' All over the world, wherever an 
American man-of-war anchored would come from ward- 
room and steerage and forecastle alike the thundering 
refrain of 

" The Guerrilre, a frigate bold, 
On the foaming ocean rolled, 
Commanded by proud Dacres, the grandee, oh, 
With as choice a British crew 
As a rammer ever knew 
They could flog the French, two to one so handy, oh " — 

and these were the popular verses: 

The Sea-Life of the Old " Younker " 8i 

" The British shot flew hot, 

Which the Yankees answered not 

Till they got within the distance they call handy, oh. 

Now says Hull unto his crew, 

' Boys, let 's see what we can do, 

If we take this boasting Briton, we 're the dandy, oh.' 

The first broadside we poured 

Carried her mainmast by the board. 

Which made this lofty frigate look abandoned, oh. 

Then Dacres shook his head. 

And to his officers he said, 

' Lord, I did n't think these Yankees were so handy, oh.' 

" Our second told so well 

That their fore and mizzen fell. 

Which dous'd the royal ensign neat and handy, oh. 

' By George,' says he, ' we 're done! ' 

And then fired a lee gun. 

While the Yankees struck up " Yankee Doodle Dandy," oh 

" Then Dacres came on board 
To deliver up his sword. 
Loth was he to part with it so handy, oh. 
' Oh keep your sword, ' says Hull, 
' For it only makes you dull. 
So cheer up, come, let 's have a little brandy, oh.' 

" Come, fill your glasses full. 

And we '11 drink to Captain Hull, 

And so merrily we '11 push about the brandy, oh. 

John Bull may toast his fill. 

Let the world say what it will, 

But the Yankee boys for fighting are the dandy, oh." 

"The Roaring Brandy wine," which commemorates the 
old ship of that name, and those who sang it say that it 
was more than any other the midshipmen's song, was 


82 The United States Naval Academy , 

jointly composed by the ward-room officers of the vessel 
when she carried the broad pennant of Commodore 
Alexander L. Wadsworth in the Pacific. Thus it goes : 

" Come wreathe the goblet with the wine, 
Ye gallant sons of the Brandywine j 
To all our hearts 
That name imparts 
An impulse half divine. 

" Our course is o'er the trackless deep, 
The billows cradle us to sleep, 
But joy is there 
Our hearts to cheer 
Aboard the Brandywine. 

" Our sweethearts, wives, and children dear 
Tho' distant far, to memory near ; 
But joy is there 
Our hearts to cheer 
Aboard the Brandywine. 

" When we return from distant seas, 
We '11 take our children on our knees 
And kiss the lass, and drink a glass 
To the roaring Brandywine. ' ' 

With the chorus, after every stanza, of 

" Brandywine, Brandywine, 

Oh, the roaring Brandy, Brandywine." 

The old naval songs have nearly passed away. The 
songs of the Civil War obliterated most of them. Thirty 
years ago "The Constitution and the Guerrifere " could 
occasionally be heard, and now and then the " High 

The Sea-Life of the Old " Younker" 83 

Barbaric," but it is doubtful if they are ever sung 
nowadays even on the practice ships ; nor has the Naval 
Academy ever had any song exclusively its own, like 
" Benny Havens, Oh," which is next to the heart of 
every West Pointer. 


From the author's " Shakings," 1867. 


Wherein we Follow the Midshipman on Board the " Smart Ships " 
of the Old Navy, See what they Made him, and Incidentally 
Note his Growing Taste for the Duello and the Extreme 
Slowness of his Promotion 

AMONG the principal influences exerting a forma- 
tive effect upon the old midshipman was the 
"smart ship " ; a vessel which has been epigram - 
matically defined as one in which the captains added to 
their military ardor and efficiency an undue amount of 
that spirit of the good housewife which makes a home 
unbearable; and thereby illustrated, in the highest de- 
gree, the kind and pitch of perfection to which by unre- 
mitting severity and exaction the appearance and drills 
of a ship-of-war could be brought.' 

The " smart ship " seems to have originated with the 
new officers who came into the Navy in 1798 from the 
merchant service, and who, because they were accustomed 
to the tar and filth of the cargo hookers of that day, ap- 
parently deemed it their bounden duty, having become 
men-of-war's men, to reverse all their former habits, and 
scrub and paint from morning to night, besides drilling 

' Captain A. T. Mahan, U.S.N. 

Some Formative Influences 85 

the men into a clock-like sort of accuracy and celerity, 
about as different from the leisurely sprawling of the 
merchant sailor as could be imagined. The brunt of the 
actual work came on the Jackies, but the labor of mak- 
ing the Jackies do the work, which on the whole was 
somewhat the harder, fell on the midshipmen. 

After the war of 1812, more attention than ever was 
given to exhibition drills and deck-scrubbing ; and as a 
consequence the midshipmen began gradually to acquire 
the fixed idea that the prime essential of naval efficiency 
depended less upon professional attainments than upon 
the maintenance of a perpetual dress parade. 

Atypical " smart-ship " captain was John Orde Creigh- 
ton, who commanded the Washington, '74, in 1816, be- 
came Commodore of the Brazil Squadron in 1829, and 
died in 1838. He was a despot pure and simple, arbitrary, 
fierce-tempered, and merciless in the rigor of his punish- 
ments. His particular fad was a curious affectation for 
the little things of routine and ceremony, which reminds 
one of Prussian Frederick or Russian Peter. He insisted 
on his midshipmen going to their stations in the tops 
in full uniform, including cocked hats and dirks. In 
every boat which lay idly at the swinging booms of the 
ship, he required that a similarly attired midshipman 
should always be found. He inspected their full-dress 
uniforms himself with the aid of a copy of the Regula- 
tions, which he construed, as he did everything else, 
" strictly"; and because the Regulations said " short- 
tailed coats," he stood up all the midshipmen on board 
the Hudson in a row, and, after critically examining their 
coat-tails for shortness, compelled the ship's tailor to cut 

86 The United States Naval Academy 

off several inches from the appendages of every garment 
which he regarded as too long. The stature of the in- 
dividuals he ignored, — tall or short, lean or fat, all of the 
coats were to be made " short-tailed," and short-tailed 
the scissors made them. His ship was beautiful to look 
at, but the men were flogged morning, noon, and night. 
He was a competent seaman himself, and tradition says 
that no one could approach him in tacking ship and 
reefing topsails at the same time, or " going about and 
hauling of all." But Farragut, who was his midship- 
man aide on the Washington, '74, tells how wretched the 
life of every one on board was made by his mania for 
smartness, and expresses his own final determination 
never to have a crack ship if it is only to be obtained 
by such means. 

In " smart ships" where the captain had a mania for 
cleanliness, the holystones were at work winter and sum- 
mer, and berth-deck, steerage, and ward-room were wetted 
down with equal impartiality, so that in cold weather the 
whole space between decks would be damp and chilly 
for the ensuing twenty-four hours, and the binnacle-list 
next day portentously filled with names of people suffer- 
ing with coughs and lung troubles. No matter at what 
cost, brasswork must be kept brilliant, guns lacquered 
like mirrors, paint applied to be scrubbed off, and then 
put on and gradually scrubbed off again. 

Another type of "smart-ship " captain regarded rapid- 
ity in evolutions rather than extreme cleanliness as the 
chief aim and object of the naval existence. The Colum- 
bus, '74, used to furl sails from a bowline in twenty-eight 
seconds. The Congress, in 1842, would come to anchor. 

Some Formative Influences 87 

and within a minute after letting go, would complete 
the furling of all plain sail. 

Other commanders were fanatical on great-gun drill, 
and wanted the guns, which were then mounted on 
wooden carriages, to be run in and out with the utmost 
velocity; although, after the pieces were pointed, the 
slowness of the ancient orders, " handle your match and 
lock-string," " cock your lock," " blow your match," 
" stand by," " fire," — it was the fashion to drawl them 
— entirely neutralized whatever gain in speed of handling 
had thus been effected. Others again required that 
beyond anything else the ship in port must appear light 
and graceful-looking aloft, therefore running rigging was 
unrove, studding-sail booms removed, and only just 
sufficient gear left (and that singled wherever possible) 
for those time-honored evolutions, " sending up and 
down topgallant and royal yards " and ." loosing and 
furling sail." 

At sea, the culminating moment of smartness occurred 
when all three topsails were reefed inside of three 
minutes. In port, the critical time was every morning 
at eight o'clock, when the colors would be hoisted and 
the drums would roll off and the bell would be struck 
and the topgallant and royal yards swung across and 
the sails loosed, and the awnings spread and the boats 
lowered — all at the same instant ; and if not at the same 
instant, woe to everybody from first lieutenant to Jack- 
of-the-dust, and to the midshipmen in particular. 

The " smart ship," while making the lives of the mid- 
shipmen thoroughly miserable, compelled them to de- 
vote their energies to petty detail, and gave them no 

88 The United States Naval Academy 

opportunity for study. It made them into martinets, and 
not intelligent ones at that, who, in later years, kept their 
midshipmen " trodden down like the main tack," even 
as they had been trodden down themselves. 

" Sir," said Captain Aulick, another typical " old- 
timer," to Midshipman Parker, who had just reported 
and wanted a day or two to buy his bedding and clothes 
for the cruise, or at least sufficient leave to go ashore and 
get his trunk from the hotel, — " Sir, when I get a mid- 
shipman on board my ship, I never let him go ashore 
until I know something of him." He finally relaxed to 
the extent of granting one hour, and after that kept the 
luckless youngster on board for sixteen months, during 
which time he granted him permission to go on liberty 
but twice. "And yet," adds Parker, " I was his aide, 
and was supposed to be his favorite." 

Occasionally the old-fashioned martinet captain of the 
" thirties" or thereabouts would into his head 
that the midshipmen needed practical experience — as if 
they ever got anything else, — but which in his mind 
meant sailorman's work. Therefore he would send the 
whole of them to loose, furl, and reef the mizzen topsail, 
and keep them at it for hours at a time. One zealous 
commander used to make them drill at a great gun while 
dressed in full uniform, including cocked hats and swords, 
as a voluntary tribute to the importance of the occasion. 
This full-uniform requirement reached its extreme on one 
of the first practice cruises of the Preble from the Naval 
Academy, when the midshipmen were all sent aboard in 
their parade clothes — gold anchors, brass buttons, etc., — 
in which they worked aloft during the entire voyage to 

Some Formative Influences 89 

Europe and back. That was the cruise in which appar- 
ently hardly the most ordinary provision was made for 
their comfort, or as one of them, now a retired rear- 
admiral, in recalling it, somewhat pathetically remarked, 
" we did n't even have any place to sit down." 

" Who roams the sea to his own bliss is blind, 
Hope mounts the prow, care follows fast behind," 

sings a forgotten poet who wrote a sea-epic on the' 
American mariner some seventy years ago ; and no doubt 
every midshipman since that time has agreed with him. 
In fact, it was a midshipman who evoked a better saying^ 
of the same idea from that grim old warrior, Commodore 
Ap. Catesby Jones. To that awful dignitary the young- 
ster ventured humbly to remark that the steerage was 

" Uncomfortable, sir, uncomfortable! " thundered the- 
Commodore, — " Why, what blanked fool ever joined the 
Navy for comfort ? " 

Another peculiarity of the old Navy was a tendency to 
bait the midshipmen. It was a sort of mild hazing, done 
presumably for the good of the service by officers of all 
ranks, and designed to impress upon the youngster a 
wholesome sense of his own insignificance and of the im- 
portance of his superior. This is typified in certain 
stories which will always be classic, and which each gen- 
eration ascribes to the one immediately preceding. 
Take, for example, the following, said to have taken 
place at the port of Cherbourg, France, whither the ship 
had just arrived after a long passage from the United 
States : 

go The United States Naval Academy 

Mid. {to Captain). " May I have permission to go 
ashore, sir ? " 

Capt. {scowling). " What for ? " 

Mid. {witk great frankness). " Never been abroad 
before, sir, and I would like very much to see the place." 

Capt. {f hawing slightly). " No doubt — very interest- 
ing place — Cherbourg, very interesting. Have you stood 
all your watch ? " 
■ Mid. {i>riskiy). "Yes, sir." 

Capt. " Not quarantined for anything ? " 

Mid. {positively). " No, sir." 

Capt. " Log all written up ? " 

Mid. "Yes, sir." 

Capt. {ruminates for a moment). ' ' Do you happen to 
know anybody ashore ? " 

Mid. {with great alacrity). " Oh yes, sir; my folks 
were in Paris, and they have come to Cherbourg on pur- 
pose to see me, sir." 

Capt. {beaming on him). " Oh-h-h, your folks here — 
eh? You 're very sure there 's nothing to keep you on 
board ? " 

Mid. {smiling expectantly). " Quite sure, sir — 

Capt. {cheerfully). " Well, you can't go." 

Here is another yarn in which the midshipman, as 
usual, begins the colloquy by a request for leave. 

1ST Luff. " Go ashore, eh ? You want to go ashore. 
Now I want you young gentlemen to understand that 
you can't kick up in this ship such an infernal racket as 
you did in the steerage yesterday during the second dog- 
watch. No, sir, you can't go— you 're quarantined." 

Some Formative Influences 91 

Mid. " But, sir, I was n't in the steerage then, sir. 
I was on deck watch, sir. I did n't have anything to 
do with it, sir, and " 

1ST Luff. " Of course, you did n't. That don't 
make any difference — you would have done it if you had 
been there. You can't go! " 

Then there is still another, which originated in the idea 
suddenly striking one meditative youngster that the Navy 
would get along just as well if he was not obliged to 
write the much-loathed " Journal " from the ship's log 
every day. So, happening to find the captain in a more 
than usually complacent mood, he ventured to suggest 
that his furthei- literary labor of that kind be dispensed 

" We-e-l-I," drawled the captain, " I dare say the 
thing as — you — keep — it — is n't much good. I guess on 
the whole there — is n't much use — of — your doing it — 
any longer." 

" Oh, thank you, sir," joyfully replied the mid. " I 
shall be so glad not to have to " 

" But," continued his superior, not heeding the inter- 
ruption and gazing solemnly into vacancy, " if you don't 
do it, you can't go ashore." 

The continued composition of that journal was not 

Fifty years ago the great majority of the individuals 
composing the crews of our men-of-war were not Ameri- 
cans, as they are now, but foreigners of every nationality. 
In such ports as Gibraltar and the Piraeus, men whose 
time had expired on our ships would re-enlist on Brit- 
ish war vessels, and vice versa. To govern these men 

92 The United States Naval Academy 

without the aid of flogging was generally believed to be 

On the " smart ships," especially, men were flogged 
with equal impartiality for drunkenness or for spilling food 
on the immaculate deck. Every soul on a topsail-yard 
might be sent to the gratings if the sail were not loosed 
or furled with the desired celerity. A record kept on the 
Congress, beginning in 1842, shows that during 1988 days 
4084 lashes of the cat were administered. When offences 
were too trivial for the cat-o '-nine- tails, there was the boat- 
swain's mate ready with the colt (a yard or so of " rattlin 
stuff" kept coiled inside his cap), which upon the order 
of even a midshipman he would twist around his hand 
and then lash the delinquent. This was not " punish- 
ment." No one below the rank of sailing-master could 
" punish " the men, but it was entirely allowable for the 
boatswain or his mates to " start them on deck," and for 
the midshipmen to direct this to be done ; acceleration 
by the colt being a part of the starting process, which 
apparently could begin anywhere and at any time. 

The formal flogging of enlisted men when a man-of- 
war first went into commission was often the occasion of 
the fainting of the young midshipmen who were com- 
pelled to witness the torture, for the appearance of a 
man's back after the first few blows of the cat was one 
calculated to try pretty strong nerves. But they soon 
grew callous to it, and correspondingly demoralized. 

A legitimate result of the old-time discipline was the 
development of the naval bully, a type of officer not ex- 
tinct twenty years ago, but who nowadays is suppressed 
by the prevailing code which exacts every outward 

Some Formative Influences 93 

courtesy. In the old days the commodore bullied the 
captain, the captain bullied the lieutenants, the lieuten- 
ants bullied the midshipmen, the midshipmen bullied the 
petty oiificers, and so on down through all the ranks and 
ratings. Not only were the enlisted men, if insubordin- 
ate, of course lashed into subjection; but, for a time at 
least in the history of our Navy, the midshipmen, and 
even the junior commissioned officers, were by no means 
unacquainted with the fists of their superiors. It was 
direct personal assault which led to the revolt of first the 
midshipmen and then the junior commissioned officers 
of the Mediterranean fleet, in 1816, against their com- 
manders who, having freely boasted that " the laws were 
not created to be held as a rod of chastisement over the 
heads of post captains," had behaved accordingly. 

Captain John Orde Creighton, when in command of 
the Washington, '74, at Gibraltar knocked down Midship- 
man John Marston with his speaking-trumpet. Marston 
addressed a complaint next day through Creighton to 
the commodore, whereupon Creighton sent for him and 
denounced him in opprobrious language. Marston there- 
upon formulated a second complaint based on this insult, 
and pressed the matter so effectually that Creighton was 
ordered before a court-martial. The court at once gave 
Creighton the widest latitude, accepted his palpably flimsy 
excuse that the blow was an" accident," browbeat Marston 
unmercifully, and referring to a lame apology offered him 
by Creighton when the court-martial seemed imminent, 
said that such an overture " ought to have been amply 
sufficient for an officer of Mr. Marston's grade," and 
ended by acquitting Creighton, while going out of its 

94 The United States Naval Academy- 
way to remark that " the prosecution was persisted in 
from malignant motives, ' ' and that they felt it a duty they 
owed to the service to express their decided disapproba- 
tion of such " malicious, frivolous, and vexatious accusa- 
tions." Commodore Chauncey approved the findings. 

Immediately fifty-one midshipmen from the various 
vessels of the fleet united in a memorial to Congress, in 
which they declared that the " laws of our service do not 
in effect secure us against personal injury from (we would 
fain hope and do believe) the few commanders and other 
officers who may be disposed to infringe upon our feel- 
ings or do violence to our persons by striking us with the 
fist, sword, or other weapon " ; and in which they prayed 
for redress and protection. 

Within a few months afterwards, another and graver 
incident of the same sort happened when Captain Oliver 
Hazard Perry not only grossly insulted his marine officer, 
Captain Heath, but also assaulted him. Perry, like 
Creighton, attempted to dispose of the matter with a 
doubtful apology. When the court was detailed, the 
members were the same as in the Creighton proceeding, 
with Creighton now a judge instead of a prisoner, and 
Perry, prisoner instead of judge. The facts were conclu- 
sively proved and the guilt of the accused manifest, but 
the sentence merely imposed a "private reprimand " from 
the Commodore. Thereupon forty-one commissioned 
officers of both line and staff united in a remonstrance to 
Congress, in which, besides bitterly denouncing the gross 
partiality of the courts-martial, they said that " they 
have now no guarantee for the safety of their persons but 
the use of the arms which the laws of their country have 

Some Formative Influences 95 

placed in their hands and that personal strength with 
which nature has blessed them." Among the signers 
were Ap. Catesby. Jones, W. B. Shubrick, S. L. Breese, 
Robert F. Stockton, and Silas H. Stringham. Nine 
marine officers united in a separate memorial. 

The commanding oiificers of the fleet. Captains Gam- 
ble, Crane, Rodgers, Nicholson, and Kennedy, forwarded 
a counterblast, demanding the removal of all the signers 
of the memorial from their ships, of which they said they 
endangered the safety. Commodore Chauncey sided 
with his captains. The memorials came before the 
House of Representatives. That body bewailed every- 
thing and did nothing, beyond feebly expressing the 
hope " that the ofificers of the Navy (to whom are con- 
fided the important duties entrusted to a court-martial 
with a due regard to the laws of this country ever to be 
held sacred by those entrusted with their execution, and 
constituting the only criterion between free and despotic 
governments) will exert themselves to heal the wounds 
with which the discipline of the Navy has been threat- 
ened," and promptly tabled an amendment providing 
that any superior who should strike or draw upon an 
inferior should be dismissed the service. 

The captains, thus virtually sustained in. their position, 
continued their tyrannical behavior, and the midshipmen, 
when they became captains in turn, forgot their early 
grievances, and imitated them. Thus the young officers 
of the Navy for many a long day learned that discipline 
was merely the arbitrary enforcement of the will of an 
autocrat, and their intelligence and their advancement 
suffered in proportion. 

96 The United States Naval Academy 

For the thirty years following the war of 1812, service 
in the Navy involved much exposure and privation and 
little glory. It was chiefly in the nature of police work 
directed to the suppression of piracy in the West Indies, 
in the Levant, and in Asiatic waters, and the extermina- 
tion of the slave-trade on the African coast. It taught 
the midshipmen to track savages in the jungle, to face 
yellow fever and die of it, to fight pirates hand to hand, 
and to recognize a slaver even when her false deck, 
gratings, handcuffs, and food coppers were skilfully con- 
cealed ; but of any other education they got only what 
they could gather in the intervals between cruises or 
when fortune favored them with assignments to peaceful 
stations. The roughness of their surroundings was re- 
flected in their customs and in their intercourse. In 
fact, when they were not fighting Malays or Spaniards 
or Mexicans or Portuguese, they were falling upon one 
another. The so-called code of honor became strained 
enough to include the squabbles of boys which to-day 
would be settled by fisticuffs. It was unfortunate that 
the commissioned officers of the Navy should have dealt 
with these affairs with the same pompous solemnity with 
which they managed their own, and permitted the young- 
sters to maim and kill one another at will. But they 
took their cue from the President of the United States 
(Andrew Jackson), who announced that while he was de- 
termined to stop duelling between officers and citizens, he 
" would not interfere between officers, whose profession 
was fighting and who were trained to arms. ' ' 

The newspapers of the period furnish a sad record 
of these encounters. Midshipman Sherburne kills 

Some Formative Influences 97 

Midshipman Key ; Midshipman May mutilates Midship- 
man Baldwin; Midshipman Wood seriously wounds 
Midshipman Barton; and the list might be extended 

The Wood-Barton duel is especially remarkable for its 
clear revelation of the twisted ideas of discipline as well 
as of honor which seem then to have prevailed. After 
the affair, Commodore Elliott, then commanding the 
Mediterranean Squadron, put Barton under arrest, re- 
fused to allow him to come aboard the flagship for treat- 
ment, and finally left him behind in Smyrna when the 
ship sailed. There was a great outcry in this country 
against Elliott for brutality, and as something had to be 
done, a court-martial was ordered on Wood — not for 
fighting a duel and maiming a messmate for life, but 
because while attached to the schooner Shark, in the 
port of Smyrna, between November lo, 1835, and Janu- 
ary I, 1836, he did run into debt to one Paul Boniface, 
" when," as the specification said, " he had no means of 
paying the same, thereby causing the Commodore of the 
squadron to be aroused from his bed at midnight previous 
to the morning of sailing to order the purser of said 
schooner to liquidate his debt from funds destined for 
the use of the squadron." And thereupon the court, 
still ignoring the duel, solemnly proceeded to convict him 
of running in debt, and held not proven the charges that 
the "Commander was aroused or the public funds exclu- 
sively appropriated to pay Midshipman Wood's debts." 

The youngsters then went on killing one another, and 
such journals as the Southern Literary Messenger, and 
others in sections of the country whye the code flourished 

98 The United States Naval Academy 

more luxuriantly than in the frozen North, printed elegiac 
verses on the victims, or copied their epitaphs as they 
were written in Johnsonian style by bereaved relatives. 

Occasionally the newspapers would comment on these 
affairs of honor with mild disapproval. " Two boys," 
says Niles's Register for October i, 1825, " midshipmen 
attached to the Constellation frigate, amused themselves 
by shooting at one another on the 22d ult., at Fort Nel- 
son, by which one of them was killed and the other has 
the pleasure to say that he has slain his brother. " But, as 
a rule, the " meetings " were gravely chronicled, and the 
conduct of the juvenile principals on the field considered 
with fine discrimination as to the nice points of etiquette. 

Some of these performances vie in absurdity with the 
famous triangular duel of Midshipman Easy; particularly 
the one which followed the visit of the Queen Dowager 
of Prussia to the Columbus when that ship was in Genoa 
in 1843. Her Majesty had expressed a special desire to 
see the fine American man-of-war, and the Commodore 
had ordered that every ceremonial honor should be 
rendered to her. So when the Queen came over the 
gangway and affably greeted the low-bowing Commo- 
dore, there, among the ofificers drawn up on the quarter- 
deck, were the midshipmen, attired in their best uniforms, 
with high cocked hats of various shapes and dimensions, 
and dirks dangling around their legs. 

" Fine woman, that," remarked Midshipman Bier to 
Midshipman Cook, as the Queen walked aft toward the 

" Don't agree with you," returned Midshipman Cook, 

Some Formative Influences 99 

" What taste! " 

" Taste — who the deuce ever accused you of having 
any ? " 

Not you — you have n't sense enough — Swab! " 

" Sir! " hissed the other " were it not for the respect 
due the quarter-deck, I would " 

The sentence was not completed because Midshipman 
Bier suddenly ducked his head in such artful manner as 
to hit Midshipman Cook in the eye with the extremity 
of his cocked hat. To this Midshipman Cook could not 
retaliate because the Queen and the Commodore had 
now returned from aft and were passing, so that he was 
obliged to stand up straight and assume a pleasant ex- 
pression, which, of course, his closed eye made it un- 
usually difficult to do. 

When the function was over. Midshipman Bier with 
his friends and Midshipman Cook with his, occupied 
opposite ends of the steerage table, the one group care- 
fully concocting a challenge, the other waiting to receive 
it. At the first opportunity the would-be combatants 
obtained shore leave and departed in the steerage cutter 
armed with ship's pistols. After reaching the shore, 
they jointly purchased ramrods, which had been forgot- 
ten, and then discovered that there was not sufficient 
funds in the party to hire two carriages, so, again jointly, 
they negotiated the hire of a single vehicle, into which 
all hands crowded themselves. 

A new difficulty now arose because nobody spoke 
Italian, and although their pantomime was vigorous, the 
cab-driver merely extracted therefrom the idea that they 
wanted to go sight-seeing, and, for some time, persistently 

loo The United States Naval Academy 

drove them to churches and statues despite their vehe- 
ment protests. At last they gave up the effort to 
make it understood that they desired a secluded place, 
and stopping the carriage in the middle of the street, 
they began preparations for the duel then and there. At 
the last moment it was found that their bullets would not 
fit the pistol barrels, so some time was consumed cutting 
the lead into slugs. But at length the preparations were 
complete, and Bier fell with a badly shattered knee, and 
Cook returned to his ship to go under arrest. 

Oddly enough, the aflair assumed a quasi-international 
character, for when the news of the encounter spread 
throughout Genoa, which was speedily, as a large crowd 
of inhabitants had watched the astonishing American 
combat, the German residents insisted in regarding Bier 
as the champion of their Queen, and made his stay in the 
hospital one long presentation of flowers and delicacies. 

Sometimes these duels assumed the proportions of 
little wars, after a fashion set by Midshipman Josiah Tat- 
nall in 1819 in Valparaiso. There had been an encounter 
by moonlight between Midshipman Pinckney of the Mace- 
donian (whom Tatnall had seconded) and an ofificer of the 
Anglo-Chilian fleet, which took place in the presence of a 
hundred or so lookers-on. As something that Tatnall 
did or said met the disapproval of the officers of the 
British flagship, he considered it incumbent on him to 
send them a message to the effect that if his course had 
in any manner displeased them, he would be most happy 
to fight them " in all grades from the cockpit to the 
cabin door," a gasconade which seems to have proved 
quite sufficient to prevent further comment. 

Some Formative Influences loi 

A quarrel of larger proportions broke out some twenty 
years afterwards between the youngsters of the Mediter- 
ranean fleet and the British army officers stationed at 
Malta. An American midshipman neglected to stand 
up when the national anthem was played in the opera- 
house, whereupon a British officer publicly reproved 
him. His part was immediately taken by his comrades, 
that of the Briton by his own, everybody challenged 
everybody else, and a scene of much prospective carnage 
was thus quickly provided for. Fortunately, the Gover- 
nor of the island and the American Commodore were 
both men of sense, and they proceeded to issue orders, 
the one for a grand review of the entire garrison, and the 
other that all the boats of the fleet should report along- 
side the flagship, and at the precise hour set for the 
general meeting. The would-be combatants being thus 
officially parted were unable to get at each other until 
wiser counsels had a chance to prevail, and then the 
whole business incontinently wound up in a love-feast, 
where, amid much popping of corks, mutual protestations 
of the highest respect for the honor and prowess of 
everybody concerned were exchanged. 

The only systematic attempt to stop duelling appears 
to have been the " duelling pledge " which Commodore 
Jones, who commanded the Pacific Squadron in 1842, 
invented after the midshipmen had developed an irresist- 
ible desire to fight at ten paces with small pocket pistols. 
Admiral Franklin records that every midshipman in the 
squadron was obliged to sign it under pain of having 
his leave stopped indefinitely, and that at the outset 
most of the youngsters acquiesced in it; but as new 

I02 The United States Naval Academy 

ships joined, it was greatly opposed, and finally became 

The document under and by virtue of which the mid- 
shipmen exercised the ofiScial functions which have been 
detailed ran as follows : 


President of the United States of America. 
To all who shall see these Presents Greeting : 

Know ye that reposing special Trust and Confidence in the 
Patriotism, Valor, Fidelity, and Abilities of ... . ,1 
do appoint him a Midshipman in the Navy of the United 

He is therefore carefully and diligently to discharge the 
duties of a Midshipman by doing and performing all manner 
of things thereunto belonging. And I do strictly charge and 
require all Officers, Seamen, and others under his command, 
to be obedient to his orders as a IVTidshipman. And he is to 
observe and follow such orders and directions as he shall re- 
ceive from me or the future President of the United States of 
America or his superior ofiicer set over him according to the 
Rules and Discipline of the Navy. 

This warrant to continue in force during the pleasure of the 
President of the United States for the time being. 

Given under my hand at the City of Washington this 
. . . . day of . . . . , in the year of our Lord One 
Thousand Eight Hundred and .... and in the 
. . . . year of the Independence of the United States. 

By the President: 

Signature of the President. 
Signature of the Secretary of the Navy. 

Many a youngster acted under this until long after his 
beard had grown. 

Some Formative Influences 103 

The protest of the midshipmen of 1815 against the 
advancement of the sailing-masters to lieutenancies 
showed that even at that early date their rate of upward 
progress was far from rapid. After the right of appoint- 
ing midshipmen at discretion and without any definite 
examination as to fitness or capacity was given to the 
President, their number rapidly increased, reaching four 
hundred in 1818, and the stagnation in promotion became 

Necessarily these boys were of all sorts and kinds. 
Plenty of them were the family ne'er-do-weels, sent into 
the Navy to find an asylum, or were superfluous progeny 
for which the country was asked to provide the support 
which the parents could not or would not furnish. While 
originally they came in greater proportion from the sea- 
board States, the unerring instinct of the congressman 
for patronage soon changed that, and they trooped east- 
ward from the inland territory, and got their first sight 
of the ocean when they donned their uniforms. The 
midshipman's list was therefore subject to great changes, 
so that the number of young oflficers available for duty 
at any one time was as variable as the wind. 

For some years prior to 1825 the promotions of mid- 
shipmen to lieutenancies were almost nothing. In that 
year some seventy were simultaneously advanced. More 
lieutenants appear to have been added to the service at 
that time (they had served as midshipmen in the war of 
1812 and still remained lieutenants in 1841) than in the 
ten years preceding. In 1827 the total number of mid- 
shipmen was 374, with nineteen who had passed their 
examination for promotion, but for whom there was no 

I04 The United States Naval Academy 

place in the higher grade, arranged on a separate list. 
Instead of curtailing the wholesale appointments that 
were then being made, it was provided that an examina- 
tion should take place after three years at sea or five 
years in the service ; that it should be rigid in character, 
and that a second failure to pass should result in dis- 
missal, while success should be rewarded by a new war- 
rant and an increase of pay from nineteen dollars a 
month and one ration to twenty-five dollars a month 
and two rations. Thus came into existence the grade of 
passed midshipmen, which persisted up to 1862. In 
1829, ten officers thus named appear in the Naval Regis- 
ter, together with 435 midshipmen, and their number 
steadily increased, reaching a maximum of 199 passed 
midshipmen to 251 midshipmen in 1836. 

The passed midshipman's status was a sort of purga- 
tory. He was still a warrant officer, and therefore not 
entitled to the consideration and privileges of the bearer 
of a commission, although he had become quaUfied for 
one. His uniform as a midshipman underwent no 
change, saving the placing of a star within the gold-lace 
diamond on his collar. He continued to mess in the 
steerage. He lived in a state of expectancy, waiting for 
the making of a vacancy on the lieutenant's list which 
would permit him to don the single epaulette, and as 
this sometimes took years, he found himself the associate 
of small boys long after his beard had fully grown and 
his natural desire to put away childish things had changed 
into a disgust for his surroundings and the life they 

In 1840 there were passed midshipmen who had been 

Some Formative Influences 105 

in the service for sixteen years, and the Regulations still 
classed them among the midshipmen to whom " no par- 
ticular duty can be assigned." On the one hand, they 
deprived the midshipmen of all the better positions, — 
mates of decks, ofificers of forecastle, etc., — and left them 
nothing but the drudgery; while, on the other, they 
were assigned the duty of lieutenants whenever the 
supply of the latter fell short. 

But this statement conveys no adequate idea of the 
variety of work which they were set to do. There were 
instances wherein they were used as first lieutenants, as 
acting surgeons, as pursers, as gunners, as acting cap- 
tains, masters, and even as chaplains. " To-day," as 
one of them plaintively remarked, " monarch of the 
peopled deck; to-morrow in a child's place without 

It is a significant fact that it was to qualify the mid- 
shipmen to pass the examination, ostensibly for lieuten- 
ants, but really for passed midshipmen, that all of the 
educational facilities, poor as they were, which the Gov- 
ernment provided in the persons of the schoolmasters 
were intended. These functionaries were at first sent 
only to the line-of-battle ships. Their pay was the mere 
pittance of seventy-five dollars a month, and their 
authority nil. Nor were matters improved when they 
were reinforced by the chaplains and their salary in- 
creased to $1200 per year, nor even when their title was 
changed to the more imposing one of " Professor of 
Mathematics. ' ' 

The school life of the youngster aboard ship is, however, 
an interesting phase of the old midshipman existence. 

io6 The United States Naval Academy 

Naturally, the reefers insisted on regarding the school- 
master as a " lubber." Even the staid and studious 
Maury turns aside in his memoirs to heap ridicule on 
the series of individuals who were attached to the ship 
on which he passed most of his midshipman days, even 
describing one as a young lawyer " who ate up all the 
plums for the duff, and was finally turned out of the 
ship as a nuisance." 

The principal trouble was that these instructors had no 
authority. The only official report which they could 
make concerning the midshipmen was as to attendance ; 
and the work of the ship took precedence always of the 
work of the school. There was no regular schoolroom. 
Sometimes the sessions were held behind a canvas screen 
on the gun-deck, sometimes in the semi-darkness of the 
berth-deck, and sometimes the captain would give the 
use of his forward cabin. The period of instruction 
usually occupied the forenoon, and, of course, the watch 
on deck could not attend. Of the midshipmen of the 
two watches off duty one half had been aroused at four 
o'clock to superintend the deck-washing, and the other 
half had stood the mid-watch (midnight to four A.M.); 
as a consequence all of them were dull and sleepy. In 
addition, they were all standing by for boat duty and 
drills, and liable to be called away at any minute, while 
around them was going on the perpetual bustle insepa- 
rable from man-of-war life. The interruptions were con- 
stant. Furthermore, the boys themselves had never 
been taught to study, and their capacity to do so was 
proportionately small. 

On some ships, the captains advised the youngsters to 

Some Formative Influences 107 

devote themselves to learning French and Spanish and 
dancing, and curtailed the hours allotted to grammar, 
arithmetic, and navigation. Other commanders directly- 
opposed the prosecution of any studies at all; holding 
that the midshipmen would learn all they needed if they 
" kept their eyes open." One of them forbade his mid- 
shipmen to work out the ship's reckoning on the ground 
that it was a secret to be known only to the captain and 
master, and therefore it was exceedingly ofificious and 
unbecoming the character of a gentleman for a midship- 
man to be prying into the rate and error of the chro- 
nometer, or, indeed, to have anything to do with the 
chronometer at all. So the midshipman's path to learn- 
ing on a cruising ship was anything but smooth. True, 
Matthew F. Maury set the Navy aghast by daring to 
produce a work on navigation when he had been but two 
years in the service ; but then he would chalk diagrams 
in spherical trigonometry on the round shot in the deck- 
racks to enable himself to master problems while pacing 
to and fro on his watch ; and he learned Spanish and 
navigation simultaneously ; and generally was a phenom- 
enon of a sort which the Navy seldom encourages any 
more than it can help. 


Wherein Tve Perceive hoiv the Midshipmen were Examined to See 
what they Knew, and ho^ their Condition being Obviously 
Declining, Schools were Organized whereto they might Go 
for Study (if they Wanted to) 

WHILE not attached to cruising vessels the mid- 
shipmen were without duties. They could 
not be given long leaves of absence to go to 
their homes, which might be far from the seaboard, nor was 
it advisable for them to do so. Therefore, they were kept 
in or about the navy yards, and, being practically idle, 
were more than ever subjected to the temptations of the 
large cities. This was obviously their best opportunity for 
instruction, and accordingly a few private schools came 
into existence early in the century. These were supple- 
mented by two temporary government institutions in 
Norfolk and New York, the first of which was established 
on board the Guerriire in 1821, in charge of Chaplain 
David P. Adams, and the second a few years later. 
They were not, however, recognized by law, and when 
Secretary Branch, in 1829, refers to them in his annual 
report, he says that " their introduction into use has not 
been effected by means very regular or direct, but they 
have been tolerated by the Government, having been 



''<:,%c'^ ■ 

^^4'^^4'r'» ^|V^'#^#^ 

The Early Naval Schools 109 

found useful notwithstanding the very limited range of 
instruction afforded by them." He asks " until some 
better system can be matured " for legal authorization 
and for such appropriation as will enable young officers 
to acquire a knowledge of foreign languages." 

Neither of these schools had any permanent abiding- 
place. That in New York at one time had its sessions in 
the loft of one of the ship-houses in the navy yard, the 
midshipmen residing in boarding-houses near the gate. 
They were under no restraint when not in attendance. 
In Norfolk the conditions were somewhat better, as the 
school was held on the frigate Java. Farragut was in 
charge of her for a time, and the youngsters were stowed 
two in a room in the ward-room, the rest in the steerage. 
Being thus compelled to live on board, they had less op- 
portunity to indulge in such dissipations as Norfolk 
afforded seventy years ago. 

It was not uncommon, however, for both commissioned 
officers and midshipmen to seek instruction elsewhere 
than at these schools. In 1829 there were four officers 
studying at Yale College and one midshipman at West 
Point. Lieutenant James H. Ward, afterwards destined 
to take a prominent part in the establishment of the 
Naval Academy, availed himself of the special course in 
science which Washington — now Trinity — College then 

In 1833 there were three naval schools under govern- 
ment control, and situated respectively in New York, 
Norfolk, and Boston. The school at Norfolk was the 
best attended, and had thirty-one students, with, however, 
but one teacher of mathematics. Professor Rodriguez, 

I lo The United States Naval Academy 

who received $981.75 per year. The New York 
school had fifteen students and two teachers, one of 
mathematics, the other of languages. The Boston school 
had but six students and one teacher, who gave instruc- 
tion in both languages and mathematics. Attendance 
on the part of the midshipmen was not obligatory. It 
was urged upon them by the Navy Department, but as 
no allowance was made for their travelling expenses, the 
aggregate of pupils remained small — barely one seventh 
the actual number of midshipmen on the list. So little 
dependence was placed on these schools that the Navy 
Department even went so far as to propose sending one 
hundred midshipmen to study at West Point. 

The pay of the teachers was raised to $1200 in 1835, 
but the schools became no better. It was then also that 
the pay of the passed midshipmen was increased to $750 
at sea, and $600 while waiting orders, and that of the 
midshipmen to $400 at sea, $350 while on other duty, 
and $300 while waiting orders or on leave of absence. 
This appears to have been the first pay for midshipmen 
which was fixed by Congress; the salary hitherto being 
determined at the discretion of the President. 

The various influences which have been detailed as 
affecting injuriously the morale of the young officers now 
began to show more than ever their aggregate effect. It 
became clearly apparent to those who had the interest of 
the country and the Navy at heart that their condition 
would certainly go from bad to worse unless some closer 
supervision were exercised over them, and unless they 
were given the steadying safeguard of education. The 
cases of intemperance were multiplying. The commanders 

The Early Naval Schools iir 

of squadrons and ships abroad were compelled to exert 
constant watchfulness to prevent their running into debt 
and leaving unsettled accounts behind them in every 
port. The Navy Department issued a warning to them 
that they were not exempt from arrest for debt. 

The peril was plain to the wiser heads among midship- 
men themselves who were in home ports. In 1836 some 
thirty of them, together with about twenty-five commis- 
sioned officers of various grades, united in a memorial to 
Congress praying for the establishment of a naval 
school, in which they pointed out that the expense of 
maintaining the existing schoolmasters and professors of 
mathematics would " liberally sustain a scientific institu- 
tion." This was signed by Stephen D. Trenchard, 
William Radford, and Roger N. Stembel, afterwards 
Rear-Admirals, and Stephen C. Rowan, the future Vice- 
Admiral of the Navy. Mr. Southard, who had been Secre- 
tary of the Navy and who had fought manfully for a 
national naval school during his entire term of office, 
was a member of the Senate Naval Committee at the 
time, and the favorable report of that body, as might 
have been expected, was insistent and eloquent. It 
failed as usual. Politics were involved ; party opposition, 
a dread of the imaginary expense, all of the paltry penny- 
wise pound-foolish " arguments " which ignorance and 
interest could invent, were duly marshalled, and they 

A year later the cause received a severe blow in the 
abolition by Great Britain of the Royal Naval College at 
Portsmouth. In the parliamentary debate on the naval 
estimates for 1837, Sir James Graham announced that 

112 The United States Naval Academy 

the decision of the Admiralty respecting the suppression 
of that institution was deemed wise, and that the cock- 
pit of a man-of-war was the best school for carrying a 
scheme of naval education into effect. The French naval 
school had been, however, definitely established by 
Louis Philippe in 1830, and was accomplishing excellent 

So affairs went on as they were. The youngsters 
studied under the schoolmasters on board Ships in the 
manner which we have seen, and went to the schools at 
the navy yards or not as they chose. It may well be 
asked why their attendance was not made compulsory at 
both. An attempt was made in that direction in the 
Regulations of 1832, which were proposed by a Board 
charged by Act of Congress with revision of the entire 
code. These, in addition to requiring the midshipmen 
to keep a sextant or quadrant, Bowditch's Navigator, 
and blank journals, and enjoining them to ascertain, and 
hand in to the commanding officer, the ship's position 
daily, besides writing up their logs, especially ordered 
them to attend such means of instruction as were pro- 
vided for them aboard ship and also at the navy yards. 
Stopped leave was the penalty for inattention. But the 
new rules were violently opposed for a variety of reasons 
by many prominent officers, and so never came into 
force. In place of them there was issued a compilation 
of rules and orders which, after providing for schools at 
the two principal navy yards and in every squadron, 
gave the midshipmen at the yards permission to attend 
the schools " when not wanted." There were very few 
youngsters in those days, like Midshipman John A. 

The Early Naval Schools 113 

Dahlgren (afterwards Rear-Admiral), who studied for 
the love of it, and who in midwinter, wrapped up in an 
overcoat, for he could not afford to pay for a fire, copied 
the whole of the method for calculating lunar distances in 
Riddle's Navigation ; a book far beyond the reach of his 
slender pay. 

Shortly after the establishment of the grade of passed 
midshipman in 1830 the uniform was materially changed. 
The midshipmen assumed for full dress a blue coat lined 
with white, single-breasted, with three buttons on pocket 
flaps and cuffs, a standing collar, and on each side of the 
latter an embroidered gold foul anchor. For undress 
they wore the round jacket with the anchor iii white 
cloth. The passed midshipman wore for full dress a 
dark blue cloth coat, lined with blue, and with rolling 
collar, three buttons on pocket flaps and cuffs, and on 
each side of the collar an embroidered gold live-oak leaf 
with acorns, a foul anchor, and a five-pointed star. For 
undress the coat was the same, but the badges were, as 
with the midshipmen, of white cloth. Both grades wore 
cocked hats with gold and blue bullions, and a black 
silk cockade, swords with eagle heads, black stocks or 
cravats. For undress they might wear round hats with 
cockades or blue cloth caps. The trousers might be 
white, blue, or of gray cloth or brown drilling, and black 
vests were allowable. 

One other change occurred in 1833 which is almost for- 
gotten, and that was a sudden recrudescence of the Rev- 
olutionary costume, the Navy Department ordering a 
return to a broad-flap double-breasted coat, white knee- 
breeches, white silk stockings, and buckled shoes for 

114 The United States Naval Academy 

full dress. This proceeding was about as much o'f an 
anachronism as the revival of the midshipman's dirk, in 
1869, when bearded six-footers were required to carry- 
that infantile weapon when on boat duty, although at 
other times they were permitted to wear their swords. 
The Revolutionary costume was worn under protest at 
sundry dances in Norfolk for a few months, and then the 
growls became so fierce and persistent that the knee- 
breeches were abolished and " white cassimere panta- 
loons " substituted. 

In 1837 the professors at the naval schools were P. J. 
Rodriguez and L. A. Bianchini at Norfolk, Edward C. 
Ward and J. Morel at New York, and Duncan Bradford 
at Boston. On the ships in commission were Martin 
Roche {United States), Bartholomew McGowen {Concord), 
John H. C. Coffin, afterwards one of the chief professors 
at the Naval Ac3.dsmy {Vandalid), and Joseph T. Huston 
{North Carolina). Rodriguez and Ward were especially 
able and progressive men, a fact which they proved by 
adopting Maury's treatise on navigation in 1836 as a 
substitute for the revered Bowditch. 

The examinations of the midshipmen for promotion 
were not made at the schools, nor solely by the profes- 
sors, but by a Board of naval officers, which met yearly 
(up to 1839) at Barnum's Hotel in Baltimore, whither the 
midshipmen repaired. Occasionally a professor was 
added in order to propound questions in mathematics, 
which, as a rule, the naval officers of the Board knew 
little or nothing about. The sessions were usually held 
in one of the hotel parlors, and the youngsters went in 
singly as they were called. Meantime they waited in the 

The Early Naval Schools 1 1 5 

barroom below stairs, where they comforted one another 
with mint juleps. The Board consisted of a commodore 
and two or three captains, and also, as has been said, a 
mathematical professor; but that the latter would be 
permitted to assist was by no means always certain. In 
any event, he was obliged to exercise the greatest cir- 
cumspection in putting questions, for if he did so in any 
way likely to exhibit to the youngsters the ignorance of 
the commodore or the captains, or even too forcibly to 
reveal it to these officials themselves, they ejected him 

The most important subject for examination was, of 
course, seamanship, beside which everything else faded 
into comparative insignificance, although the candidate 
was supposed to pass in naval gunnery and navigation. 
But navigation meant nothing more than a rule-of-thumb 
knowledge of Bowditch, and Bowditch was a practical 
work written for the captains of merchantmen, and 
abounding in " forms " and cast-iron directions for filling 
them out, together with the necessary tables of loga- 
rithms, etc., so that a seaman totally ignorant of nautical 
astronomy and with merely sufficient intelligence to read 
a sextant and perform rudimentary arithmetical com- 
putations could discover the position of his ship at sea 
without being very many miles in error. 

For some weeks prior to the day of trial the midship- 
men would study the forms for meridian altitudes and 
time sights given by Bowditch until they knew them by 
heart, with the full assurance that nothing more difficult 
would be required of them. In fact, it was altogether 
injudicious for them to intimate that they knew anything 

ii6 The United States Naval Academy 

more, for that would be to reflect upon the examining 
captains, who knew, if anything, less. Midshipman Maury 
ventured to exhibit his superior knowledge by pretending 
ignorance of Bowditch's method for lunar distances, 
and going to the blackboard, treated the whole subject 
from an original standpoint, as a problem in spherical 
trigonometry, The mathematical examiner was non- 
plussed, floundered dreadfully, and finally brazenly as- 
serted that the midshipman was wrong. Maury insisted 
that he was right, and an appeal was taken to the Board. 
As not one of the captains had the slightest knowledge 
of the subject, it was a serious question whether they 
should visit their wrath upon the professor for getting 
them into a scrape, or look wise and solemnly decide in 
his favor. They concluded that, all things considered, 
the latter course was the safer one, so they unanimously 
voted that the youngster was wrong; whereupon the 
examiner haughtily advised him to go to sea and learn 
navigation. As a consequence, probably the most learned 
navigator the Navy ever had passed number twenty -seven 
in a class of forty, and lost about two year's promotion. 

The examinations varied greatly with the individuals 
who conducted them. Perhaps the classic examination 
in seamanship of Midshipman Josiah Tatnall (" Old 
Tat ' ') may be taken as representing an extreme case. 
It is reported to have been about as follows: 

Commodore. " Mr. Tatnall, what would be your 
course supposing you were off a lee shore, the wind 
blowing a gale, both anchors and your rudder gone, all 
your canvas carried away, and your ship scudding rapidly 
toward the breakers ? " . 

The Early Naval Schools 117 

Tatnall. " I cannot conceive, sir, that such a com- 
bination of disasters could possibly befall a ship in one 
voyage. ' ' 

Commodore. " Tut, tut, young gentleman, we must 
have your opinion supposing such a case to have actually 

Tatnall. ' ' Well, sir, — sails all carried away, do 
you say, sir ? " 

Commodore. " Aye, all — every rag." 

Tatnall. " Anchor gone, too, sir ? " 

Commodore. " Aye — not an uncommon case." 

Tatnall. " No rudder, either ? " 

Commodore. "Aye — rudder unshipped. " (Tatnall 
drops his head despondingly in deep thought.) " Come, 
sir, come — bear a hand about it. What would you do ?" 

Tatnall {at last and desperate). " Well, I 'd let the 
infernal tub go to the devil, where she ought to go." 

Commodore {joyously). " Right, sir, perfectly right! 
That will do, sir. The clerk will note that Mr. Tatnall 
has passed." 

Whatever might be said about the examination in 
other subjects, the ordeal in seamanship was usually 
severe, and when some captain began upon his own 
particular pet hobbies, and it appeared that the midship- 
man had never heard of them, the position of the young- 
ster was anything but enviable. 

Because practical seamanship was regarded as the main 
thing to be learned in days gone by, the statement is 
often made that while the young officer of the present 
time has been taught how each thing ought to be done, 
the young officer of the old service knew how to do it. 

ii8 The United States Naval Academy 

That is true only as a "glittering generality." There is 
no occasion now to teach naval cadets how to cut and fit 
rope rigging, nor to manage sail, as if we were still in the 
days of the Constitution or the ' ' 'States frigate. ' ' Fight- 
ing wind and weather on the deck of a sailing craft is 
admirable, no doubt, as a school for quick decision and 
resource ; but driving a torpedo-boat into a heavy sea at 
thirty knots, or handling ten thousand tons of steel 
plunging about in a typhoon, needs higher qualities of 
readiness, self-reliance, and trained intelligence than the 
ancient mariners of the razees and '74's ever dreamed of 



From the author's " Shakings," 1867. 


Wherein we Recount the Establishment of the Naval Asylum 
School at Philadelphia, and how the Midshipmen Lived who 
Came to it — Noting Especially the Happy Suggestion of a 
Youth Named Chauvenet who Came there to Teach Mathe- 
matics, and Likewise Observing that the General Condition 
of the Youngsters throughout the Navy was Steadily Getting 

IN 1838 a naval school of much more importance than 
any of its predecessors was organized at the Naval 
Asylum, a home for aged seamen, which is still in 
existence near Philadelphia. Some twenty-eight years 
before, Paul Hamilton, then Secretary of the Navy, had 
proposed the establishment of naval hospitals for the 
infirm sailors, and incidentally, though somewhat incon- 
sequently, had suggested that midshipmen might be sent 
to these places for instruction. 

Whether Hamilton's suggestion bore late fruit or not 
is uncertain. At all events. Secretary Paulding, in 
the year before mentioned, established there a school of 
preparation, at which the midshipmen were permitted to 
pass a year — an academic year, however, of only eight 
months — in the study of mathematics required at the 
examination. Professor David McClure was appointed 


I20 The United States Naval Academy 

to take charge of the class in mathematics and naviga- 
tion, and a teacher of the French language was added. 
French, however, was but a nominal study, and it was 
not then insisted upon at the examinations by the Naval 
Board ; so, naturally enough, the midshipmen gave their 
undivided attention during their brief term of prepara- 
tion to the studies on which their rank for life was made 
to depend. From the time of the organization of the 
school the Examining Board sat at, the Asylum, the pro- 
fessor of mathematics acting as examiner, but deprived 
of a vote in the decision. 

The accommodations were poor and inadequate. In 
1 84 1, according to Rear-Admiral Ammen, who at that 
date was a midshipman in attendance, the youngsters 
were quartered in small rooms arranged in one wing of 
the Asylum building, and each about eight feet square. 
Each apartment had a window, provided with bars like 
that of a prison. The furniture consisted of a small iron 
bedstead and washstand, a wooden wardrobe, and a 
mirror. The number of midshipmen under instruction 
in 1 841 was thirty-four. The naval pensioners, for whom 
the building was constructed, numbered then about one 
hundred, and they were generally assigned to the other 
wing of the building. The cost of board was twenty 
dollars per month, deducted from the pay of each 
student, and the wife of the gunner who was stationed 
as an assistant to take care of the pensioners was pur- 
veyor. The youngsters did not fare luxuriously. As for 
discipline, there was practically none ; nor was there any 
one specially charged with its enforcement. The young- 
sters studied or idled as suited their whims, and owned 

The Naval Asylum School 121 

their clothing in common, as they had been accustomed 
to do on board ship. Their uniform, when they wore 
any, was as heterogeneous as that of the service in 

For amusement they rambled aropnd Philadelphia 
pretty much as they were accustomed to do in Valparaiso 
or Mahon, but without the opportunities afforded by 
these interesting seaports for unholy enjoyment. Their 
social pleasures were somewhat restricted, owing to the 
inadequacy of their wardrobes; although, by careful 
combination of the best garments belonging to each of 
them in severalty upon some one individual, it was pos- 
sible now and then to send a representative to a ball or 
party fairly well equipped, even if his toggery did present 
curious variations in fit. They probably found more joy 
in getting out of the school than in being out. The only 
attempt at discipline which was made seems to have been 
an endeavor to keep them within bounds at night — and a 
high paling, which it was supposed they could not climb, 
was considered a sufficient barrier. But the youngsters 
discovered that when two adjacent vertical pickets were 
sprung laterally in opposite directions, space enough was 
made between them to allow of a person squeezing 
through. After that, nocturnal parties never included 
less than three midshipmen, two to heave back on the 
pickets, while the third crawled between them. This 
plan worked excellently well until one night, just when a 
somewhat thick midshipman was laboriously effecting his 
escape, the alarm was given that the commanding officer 
was coming, whereupon those who were assisting let go 
of their pickets and precipitately decamped, leaving their 

122 The United States Naval Academy 

unfortunate comrade rigidly grasped in an effectual 
spring-trap. Luckily, he was unobserved, but he had to 
stay there some hours before his friends judged it prudent 
to come to his relief. 

The Asylum Sphool in the beginning was practically 
one for cramming for examinations. The latter were 
not particularly conclusive, and it was becoming unusual 
for any one to fail to pass. " It was said," says Admiral 
Ammen, speaking of his own experience, " that several 
of the members of the Board insisted upon a particular 
midshipman passing, they being ' friends of the family.' 
The other members then asserted that none should be 
found deficient, and so we all passed." 

Rear-Admiral Preble, however, among his unpublished 
manuscripts has left us a much more definite showing of 
what the examination actually was in 1841, and for the 
sake of coming generations of young naval officers some 
details of it are worth placing on permanent record. The 
Board consisted of Commodore James Biddle, who was 
in charge of the school, President; Commodores George 
E. Read and Henry E. Ballard, Captain David Connor, 
Professor McClure, and Mr. Harris, Secretary^ — in point 
of rank a rather more imposing tribunal than is charged 
with the examination of youngsters nowadays. The 
subjects of the examination were: 

" Bowditch' s Navig-aior, Flayiaiir' s Euc/id {Books i, 2, 
3, 4, and 6), McClure's Spherics, Spanish or French lan- 
guage, mental and moral philosophy, and Bourdon's 
Algebra''; and last, but not least, for the Admiral has 
drawn two heavy black lines with his pen beneath it. 
Seamanship. ' ' This was by far the most comprehensive 

The Naval Asylum School 123 

course which the midshipmen had yet essayed to master ; 
and it had reached its existing complexity in about 
three years after the school had started. 

There were twenty-two students in the class. Some 
idea of the relative importance of seamanship as com- 
pared with the other subjects can be gleaned from the 
time records of the examination. The midshipman who 
passed No. i was examined for forty minutes in seaman- 
ship and thirty-five minutes in everything else. The 
longest seamanship examination lasted one hour and 
twenty-eight minutes. The Board was evidently doubt- 
ful about that youngster, but he got through safely and 
as No. 20. The shortest seamanship examination was 
over in twenty-one minutes, but the other topics were 
rushed through in thirty-four minutes, and that individual 
passed No. ii. 

In April, 1842, Professor McClure, who, by the way, 
seems to have held the opinion that two months was 
long enough to devote to the whole subject of practical 
navigation, died, and was succeeded by a young scholar 
whose part in the foundation of the United States Naval 
Academy was destined to be second only to that of Sec- 
retary Bancroft himself. This was William Chauvenet. 
He was little more than a boy, for he was but twenty 
years of age ; yet he had already achieved reputation for 
his mathematical attainments, and especially for the 
meteorological and magnetical observations which he had 
conducted at Girard College in conjunction with Alexan- 
der Dallas Bache. 

Immediately upon taking charge. Professor Chauvenet 
commenced the work of reform so far as was possible 

124 The United States Naval Academy 

within the limits of the system then existing. He 
arranged a much more severe course of mathematical 
study than had been prescribed before, and obtained for 
it the formal sanction of the Secretary of the Navy. He 
introduced regular recitations and a system of marks for 
daily recitations which he made the basis of merit rolls 
in mathematics. When he assumed office, the entire 
apparatus of the school consisted of one worn-out circle 
of reflection, and a small blackboard, not even fastened 
to the wall, but resting on the floor of the dark basement 
room in which informal and irregular recitations had 
hitherto been held. 

Chauvenet, at the outset, found in Commodore Biddle, 
then Governor of the Asylum, a warm supporter of his 
projected reforms, and Biddle granted to him the use of 
a large and well-lighted room on an upper floor, gave him 
abundant blackboards, approved all his requisitions for 
chronometers, sextants, etc., and, in brief, did everything 
that could be done to make so short a course of study 
under a single instructor effective and profitable. 

Professor Chauvenet soon saw that the time of study 
was too brief, and the studies taught too limited in range, 
to suffice for the proper education of a naval officer. 
Naturally, since the idea of the Asylum School was not 
to give an education, but merely such necessary instruc- 
tion as would enable the midshipmen to acquire a suffi- 
cient knowledge of navigation and other studies, which 
they could not satisfactorily obtain on a cruising vessel, 
in order to qualify them to pass the examination for 
promotion — such as it was. 

If Chauvenet had been older, or had possessed a better 


The Naval Asylum School 125 

understanding of the causes of repeated failures of others 
to induce Congress to provide for a complete educational 
course for midshipmen, he might well have hesitated 
in the undertaking upon which he now entered. But, 
fortunately, he had all the ardor of youth and inexperi- 
ence ; and therefore he drew up a plan for the conversion 
of the institution into a regularly organized school in 
which all the subjects necessary to the education of the 
naval officer should be taught by competent instructors. 
This was the germ of the future Naval Academy. It 
represented to the Secretary of the Navy that the same 
power exercised by that official in sending the midship- 
men to the Asylum for one year and in sending one 
professor there to teach them might be exercised in 
retaining them there for two more years, and in pro- 
viding not only more naval professors, but also any 
regular officers of the service who might be willing to 
engage in instruction. The plan involved no new ex- 
pense. The requisite material and personnel were at the 
disposition of the Secretary of the Navy. It was, of 
course, foreseen that, as the numbers of midshipmen in 
attendance would be increased by their remaining several 
years at the school, new quarters might be necessary, and 
it might soon be desirable to increase expense, which the 
Secretary had no authority to meet without a specific 
appropriation by Congress; but the first object was to 
initiate a successful course of study, and then to ask 
Congress to support it. 

Early in the winter of 1843-44 Professor Chauvenet 
drew up a programme of a two-year course of study at 
the Naval Asylum, which was officially adopted by the 

126 The United States Naval Academy 

Secretary of the Navy, Mr. David Henshaw, and the 
Governor of the Naval Asylum received orders to carry 
the system into effect in the following September. But 
Mr. Henshaw left office soon after issuing the order, 
and Secretary Mason revoked it, in deference to the 
representations of naval officers, who thought that the 
midshipmen could not be spared from service at sea to 
attend a two-year course on shore. 

The important suggestion that there was sufficient 
power already vested in the Navy Department to estab- 
lish a national naval school adequate to all the necessi- 
ties, without recourse to Congress, was thus made. How 
it fructified we shall see farther on ; for the present it is 
enough to say that, despite its apparent failure, it served 
an immediately useful purpose, in that it led to the 
immediate improvement of the one-year course. The 
faculty of the school was strengthened by the addition 
of Professor J. H. Belcher, who gave lectures on mari- 
time law, and by the first naval officers of the line who 
systematically undertook to impart their professional 
knowledge to their younger brethren. These were Lieu- 
tenants James H. Ward, who became Instructor in 
Ordnance and Gunnery, and Passed Midshipman Samuel 
Marcy, who assisted Professor Chauvenet in teaching 

Ward had enjoyed considerably greater educational 
advantages than usually fell to the lot of the naval officer 
of the time. He had entered the Navy with a good 
common-school training, and after a four years' cruise 
on the Constitution had obtained a year's leave, which he 
spent at Washington— now Trinity— College, Hartford. 

The Naval Asylum School 127 

Although his sea service, save only this brief period, had 
been continuous for nearly twenty years, and often of 
the most arduous character, he had been so persistent a 
student that when he came to the Philadelphia school 
he had an accomplished reputation as one of the best- 
educated officers in the Navy. 

Greatly as Professor Chauvenet had improved the 
Naval Asylum School, it must not be assumed that it 
had risen to the dignity of an institution which educated 
even a tenth of the young officers. Sometimes it did 
not have a twentieth of them. That it did good is in- 
disputable; but upon the midshipmen as a body it could 
not at the outset accomplish any marked results, espe- 
cially when their number was constantly changing owing 
to the absence of any check imposed by law upon Ex- 
ecutive appointments, and when their morale was stead- 
ily deteriorating. To perceive what this deterioration 
was doing it is necessary to look at the state of affairs 
prevailing in the active Navy during the period of the 
development of the Naval Asylum School just under 


Now at the Naval Academy, 


'Wherein the Condition of the Midshipmen, despite all Efforts to 
Improve it, Grows Perilous, and finally one of them Gets 
Hanged at the Yard-arm ; and the Worst of the Gale now 
having been Weathered, a Clearer Horizon Begins to Open 
with the Mastheads of the new National Naval School just 

WHEN the first appropriation for building steam 
vessels was made in the spring of 1839, ^^^ 
advocates of the establishment of a national 
naval school found that a new argument in their behalf 
had come into existence, for it became quickly manifest 
that the substitution of steam for sail power would call 
upon the naval officer for knowledge in branches of learn- 
ing which he had hitherto had no occasion to acquire. 
The man-of-war then contained- the least possible 
amount of mechanism. It was a cardinal principle that 
the work of a warship should be done by ' ' beef ' ' — by 
men's muscles — and not through the agency of me- 
chanical devices other than those of the very simplest 
type. Topsail-yards were hoisted and guns and boats 
taken in by men pulling on the tackle-falls. Not a 
winch was on board. The capstans for raising the 
anchor were of the simplest kind, and turned by men 


Perilous Condition of the Midshipmen 129 

pushing the bars and walking around. The gun-car- 
riages were mere wooden barrows on wooden wheels, 
hauled in and out by tackles. The guns themselves 
were elevated by handspikes used as levers and thrust 
under the breech, and retained at the desired angular 
position by quoins, which were merely wedge-shaped 
pieces of wood. Flint-locks were still in use, and always 
supplemented by burning match rope. The gun sights 
were battens of oak made by the ship's carpenter, with 
a groove parallel to the axis of the bore, and lashed 
to the guns with marline. The pumps were of the 
simplest type, operated by hand-levers like the old-fash- 
ioned fire-engines. Wire and iron standing rigging with 
turnbuckles or tightening screws was unknown, and so 
were chain cables, the use of which was strongly opposed 
by the old sailors for years. Rope was everywhere em- 
ployed. In brief, every appurtenance of the ship was of 
the most primitive construction, and purposely kept so, 
long after the merchant vessels had adopted labor-saving 
mechanisms of all kinds. 

There was, therefore, no environment afloat which 
could foster any mechanical learning on the part of the 
midshipmen, nor favor their acquiring a new vocation. At 
the same time, there were far-seeing men to recognize 
that, sooner or later, the inevitable onward march of steam 
propulsion would render a knowledge of marine engineer- 
ing indispensable to those upon whom the responsibility 
of handling the marine war power was to come. The de- 
mand for a naval school, already insistent in the public 
press, therefore assumed a new phase. Hitherto the pro- 
posals had been merely for a school of navigation and 

I30 The United States Naval Academy 

seamanship to be located at some one convenient point, 
such as Craney's Island near Norfolk, or Fortress Mon- 
roe, or Governor's Island in New York harbor; or, as 
Maury and others of the ofiScers preferred, upon cruising 
school-ships, or at least, as finally was established, upon 
a vessel like the North Carolina, which in winter was 
moored at the Brooklyn Navy Yard, and in summer 
anchored in New York bay. Now, however, they began 
to change and include arguments in behalf of combining 
with the national school of seamanship, navigation, and 
naval architecture a school of steam engineering. 

It was proposed that the educational course should be 
four years at a naval school, with annual practice cruises, 
and then three years at " steam instruction." " The 
place for the Naval School," said one of its advocates, 
" should be anywhere, even on top of the Rocky Moun- 
tains, whence, as the king penguins do their young, the 
reefers should be marched down to salt water once a. year 
and be taught to put in practice the theories they had 
learned in the rookery." But the preferred spot was the 
dock-yard at Memphis, Tennessee, where machine build- 
ing could be made a special feature. Another advocate 
suggested that a school devoted to steam engineering ex- 
clusively should be established at St. Louis, to which all 
the midshipmen in turn might be sent. 

It is hardly sufficient to say that these seeds fell on 
barren ground. The ground literally cast them forth. 
It was as impossible to obtain the sanction of the sea 
officers, who were the real rulers of the Navy, to such a 
plan as this as if it had been proposed at the same time 
to instruct all the midshipmen in the trade of bricklaying. 

Perilous Condition of the Midshipmen 131 

Nevertheless, the agitation did good, and brought the 
fulness of time for the creation of the Naval School meas- 
urably nearer. 

On the other hand, however, the tares that had been 
sown long before were ripening. The lowered morale of 
the whole service incident to the severe discipline of the 
" smart ships " and the neglect of the young officers be- 
gan to show itself in the high places. To the tales of 
the infliction of brutal floggings and hard labor became 
added charges of wrongdoing against the men who had 
risen to command. It is not necessary here to discuss 
the probable foundation for these. It is enough that 
they were made, and that the newspapers of the country 
were full of them. Within thirty years the tone of the 
press had changed from wholesale laudation of the offi- 
cers of the Navy as patriots and heroes to bitter diatribes 
against them as peculators and tyrants. 

The captains afloat in the " forties " were publicly de- 
nounced for incurring debts anywhere and everywhere 
and paying them with a flowing sheet; for requiring the 
" slush funds " of their ships (funds derived by the men 
from selling the grease from their rations, and since time 
immemorial Jacky's perquisite) to be entrusted to them, 
and then stealing them ; for certifying to false musters 
and false accounts, so that they might draw the illegally 
charged pay; for selling government supplies furnished 
to their ships ; for appropriating materials belonging to 
the Government in order to construct speculative build- 
ings ; for hoisting a midshipman aloft to the royal mast- 
head by means of the royal halliards, as a punishment ; 
for grabbing stakes from a gambling table and running 

132 The United States Naval Academy 

away ; for rating their relatives as clerks and permitting 
them to draw the pay, while forcing enlisted men to do 
the actual work ; for smuggling ; for nepotism and favor- 
itism in the most offensive forms ; for drunkenness and 
debauchery in their own cabins ; and for brutality to the 
officers and men under their control. 

In vain the advocates of a national naval school 
pointed out that this state of affairs, if true, must have 
had its origin in ignorance. In vain the Secretary of the 
Navy urged upon Congress the paramount need for such 
a school, citing West Point as proof of its value and 
practicability. The most that was accomplished was a 
limitation, imposed in 1842, intended to check the reck- 
less appointing of midshipmen to pay off political debts ; 
which was but a jump from the frying-pan into the fire, 
because no provision was made for regulating the distrib- 
ution of the appointees authorized ; and as a consequence 
certain sections of the country were more highly favored 
than others. In 1842, out of 158 midshipmen appointed, 
seventy were selected from Virginia, Maryland, and the 
District of Columbia. 

Within the service there was grave dissatisfaction. 
Several of the ablest of the older officers — and chief 
among them Lieutenant Maury, who, in his articles en- 
titled " Scraps from a Lucky Bag," published in the 
Southern Literary Messenger , aroused the attention of the 
whole country — denounced the existing conditions in 
terms which would speedily have resulted in a court- 
martial had the naval regulations of to-day then been in 
force. The public mind was inflamed by the reports of 
the brutality and oppression on ship-board, and the 

Perilous Condition of the Midshipmen 133 

agitation to abolish flogging and curtail the power of the 
captains assumed new vigor. The little school at the 
Naval Asylum, the development of which in the mean- 
while had taken place in the manner already told, had 
exercised no perceptible retarding influence upon the 
general demoralization. The circumstances were all, 
therefore, favorable to a crisis of some kind— and it came. 
Several of the young acting midshipmen were quar- 
tered on board the ship-of-the-line North Carolina at New 
York, which vessel was also at the time used both as a 
receiving ship or " guardo," and as a training-ship for 
apprentice boys. Among the midshipmen was Philip 
Spencer (his appointment bearing date November 20, 
1841), a son of John C. Spencer, then Secretary of War, 
and a nephew of Captain William A. Spencer of the 
Navy, who had taken him under his special tutelage. 
Young Spencer had received some education at Union 
College, Schenectady, but even there had achieved an 
unenviable reputation for misbehavior and for a singular 
addiction to piratical adventure ; a trait which his friends 
naturally construed into mere boyish waywardness. So, 
like many another troublesome youth, he was launched in 
the Navy, to be disciplined and cured. Captain Spencer, 
having been ordered to the Mediterranean Squadron, 
turned the boy over to the immediate care of the juliior 
lieutenant of the North Carolina, William Craney. It 
was not long before Craney discovered that his prot6g6 
was incorrigibly addicted to mischief and liquor. Not 
only did every effort on the part of Craney to reclaim 
him prove unavailing, but finally, when Craney, under 
great provocation, undertook to have the boy subjected 

134 The United States Naval Academy 

to disciplinary punishment, he found the Spencer poh'ti- 
cai influence bitterly arrayed against him, and pursuing 
him, as he afterwards claimed, with malignant vindictive- 
ness. However much the reports of this may have been 
exaggerated, the result seems to have been that the un- 
fortunate Craney met with much official browbeating, 
and the episode ended in his leaving the service. 

Spencer, meanwhile, had been transferred to the John 
Adams, on the Brazil Squadron, where he seems to have 
speedily added to his record for cracked-brain viciousness. 
He received the censure of the Navy Department, and 
escaped a court-martial only through the influence of his 
father and his own promises of amendment. In the fall 
of 1842 he was sent to the brig Somers, a small but very 
speedy craft of 226 tons measurement, which had lately 
been launched at New York, and which, under the com- 
mand of Commander Alexander Slidell Mackenzie, had 
been ordered to the coast of Africa with despatches. 
The Somers carried ten guns. Her personnel consisted 
of twelve officers, nine seamen, six landsmen, and about 
one hundred apprentice boys, drafted from the North 
Carolina — the ship on which Spencer had only recently 

The Somers \&it Cape Palmas on November 11, 1846, % 
for *New York, intending to stop at St. Thomas on the 
way. On November 26th the commanding officer was 
apprised of a conspiracy, set afoot by Spencer, to capture 
the brig, murder her officers, and take her to the Isle of 
Pines, whence she was to sail as a pirate. 

Commander Mackenzie had been in the Navy since 
181 5. He was about forty years of age. To an excellent 

Perilous Condition of the Midshipmen 135 

professional reputation he had added considerable re- 
nown as an author. With the possible exception of 
Maury, there was hardly an officer in the service of 
greater attainments both in and out of his immediate 
calling. He was a cool, self-contained, clear-minded, 
thoroughly-trained seaman; the last man imaginable to 
give way to fear or passion, and distinctly one on whose 
judgment in time of emergency it would seem reliance 
could be safely placed. 

The Somers had none of the imposing appurtenances 
of a man-of-war. She was a little vessel, not any larger 
than the ordinary coasting schooner or than many a pri- 
vate yacht of to-day. She had low bulwarks, a single 
narrow deck flush fore and aft, and a long truck-house, 
or companion, raised a few feet above the deck to let 
light and air to the officers' quarters below, which were 
separated from those of the crew by bulkheads. Allow- 
ing for her necessary stores and equipments, it is obvious 
that her available berthing space was small, and that her 
people must have been closely crowded. Access to her 
deck from the officers' quarters was attainable only 
through narrow scuttles, so that a few men stationed 
thereat could easily have kept her officers below or killed 
them in detail if they attempted to come up. There 
were no marines to guard the magazine and arm-chests. 

Mackenzie was well aware of Spencer's bad reputation, 
and when the midshipman was first ordered to the Somers 
had endeavored, though without success, to have him 
transferred to another vessel. Nevertheless, when the 
first report of the intended mutiny reached him he 
treated it as mere vaporing; but the other officers 

136 The United States Naval Academy 

regarded it with such serious apprehension that he caused 
Spencer to be arrested and put in irons. A search in 
Spencer's effects revealed documents of a sufficiently com- 
promising character to cause also the arrest of Samuel 
Cromwell, boatswain's mate, and Elisha Small, seaman, 
and afterwards four others of the crew. The behavior 
of the men now became marked. They were sullen, dis- 
obedient, and in brief showed the premonitory symptoms 
of mutiny. 

Mackenzie convened his officers in a court of inquiry. 
They summoned the members of the crew before them, 
and took their depositions in writing. The brig mean- 
while was managed by Mackenzie himself and two young 
acting midshipmen, Deslandes and Tillotson. As the 
result of their investigations, the officers united in a 
letter to Mackenzie, in which they reported that Spencer 
and the two arrested seamen were guilty of a 

" determined intention to commit a mutiny on board this vessel 
of a most atrocious nature, and that the revelation of the cir- 
cumstances having made it necessary to confine others with 
them, the uncertainty as to what extent they are leagued with 
others still at large, the impossibility of guarding against the 
contingencies which a day or an hour may bring forth, we are 
convinced that it would be impossible to carry them to the 
United States, and that the safety of the public property, the 
lives of ourselves and those committed to our charge require 
that they should be put to death. ' ' 

This was signed by Guert Gansevoort, lieutenant; R. W. 
Leecock, assistant surgeon; H. M. Hieskell, purser; 
M. C. Perry, acting master; Henry Rogers, Egbert 
Thompson, and Charles W. Hayes, midshipmen. 

The position in which Mackenzie found himself placed 

Perilous Condition of the Midshipmen 137 

was therefore the most trying which could befall any one 
charged with the responsibility of command. The vessel 
was then 525 miles distant from St. Thomas. The 
length of time required to reach the nearest United 
States port was indeterminate, since it depended upon 
the wind and weather. To keep the prisoners, ironed on 
the quarter-deck — the only available place — was to pro- 
vide a constant source of irritation to the already disaf- 
fected crew, and to invite a rescue and precipitation of 
an outbreak, when no possible help would be available, 
no retreat at hand, no concessions likely to be of any 
use. Furthermore, however willing Mackenzie and his 
ofificers might have been to risk the issue of personal 
conflict, it was their duty as public ofificers to prevent at 
all hazards the vessel becoming a pirate ; and as to the 
imminence of that, it was for them to judge then and 
there. They decided that but one possible course was 
open, and, therefore, on December ist. Acting Midship- 
man Philip Spencer, together with Cromwell and Small, 
condemned as ringleaders, were hanged at the yard-arms 
of the Somers. Afterwards the colors were hoisted and 
the crew ordered to " cheer ship," which they did with 
a will. 

The brig touched at St. Thomas, and arrived not long 
afterwards at New York. The news created great public 
excitement. The journals which had hitherto attacked 
the navy captains for alleged nefarious practices now 
concentrated their wrath on Mackenzie. The influence 
of the Secretary of War and his political friends was 
directed against him with the avowed object of bringing 
him to the gallows for wilful murder. 

138 The United States Naval Academy 

Mackenzie demanded a court of inquiry. It was held 
■under the presidency of Commodore Stewart, and it 
•exonerated him. Before its finding reached Washing- 
ton, the Secretary of the Navy ordered him to trial by 
court-martial on a charge ot murder. The court was as 
imposing a tribunal as the Navy could furnish. Commo- 
dore John Downes presided, and it included ten captains 
and two commanders. Despite the powerful influence 
of Spencer's father — who virtually directed the prosecu- 
tion — its judgment was an honorable acquittal. The 
persecution of Mackenzie then began. Every effort was 
made to secure his indictment in the civil courts, but the 
judges in each case denied the jurisdiction of these 
tribunals, and dismissed the proceedings. But the neces- 
sity for providing for his defence left him broken in 

Despite the attempts which have been made of late 
years to heap obloquy upon Mackenzie's memory, and to 
secure the ofificial canonization of the three miscreants 
who were rightly hanged, the verdict of posterity has 
long since justified his action. 

Spencer has repeatedly been depicted if not as an in- 
jured innocent, at least as an ofBcer of experience, and 
hence unlikely to join in such an adventure. As a mat- 
ter of fact, he had been in the Navy but one year, and 
apparently had not received even his midshipman's war- 
rant. The execution of Cromwell and Small not only 
deprived the disaffected members of the crew of their 
leaders, but left them with no one capable of navigating 
the ship even if they should gain possession of her. 

The controversy which long raged around the event 

Perilous Condition of the Midshipmen 139 

established the principle which Charles Sumner thus laid 

" Over all errors of judgment under such circumstances of 
necessity, the law throws its ample shield. Whatever the 
commander does in such an emergency in good faith and in 
the conscientious discharge of his duty, 'believing it to be 
necessary to the safety of his ship or of the lives of those on 
board, receives the protection of the law. ' ' 

The tragedy of the Somers served better perhaps than 
any other occurrence could have done to fix public atten- 
tion upon the shortcomings of the existing system of 
appointing and of educating young naval ofificers. It 
showed the absurdity of taking in youths at the behest 
of politicians without a proper proof of fitness, and the 
wretched folly of sending bad boys into the Navy as 
a reformatory, or even of subjecting good ones to the 
wholly unfamiliar influences of naval life afloat without 
previous preparation. The press thundered, but pro- 
posed little that was of practical value. The officers of 
the Vincennes begged for the establishment of naval 
schools and the abolition of sea professors ; and Commo- 
dore Stewart individually advocated a single school 
where mathematics, languages, international law, and 
the principles of the steam-engine should be taught. 
The Secretary of the Navy — as his predecessors had done 
over and over again — made similar recommendations, 
and proposed that schools should be established at "such 
of the old military fortifications on the seaboard as may 
afford suitable accommodations, and as may not be 
required by the War Department." 

But nothing came of it all, except a law enacted in 

I40 The United States Naval Academy 

1845 and intended to prevent the members of Congress 
ftom certain States obtaining more than their share of 
patronage. It provided that midshipmen should be ap- 
pointed from each State and Territory in proportion to 
the number of Representatives and Delegates, the ap- 
pointee being an actual resident of the State from which 
he was appointed. As the Secretary of the Navy could 
not know much about the inhabitants of particular dis- 
tricts, he naturally sought to ascertain concerning the 
fitness of the applicant from the Congressman of the 
district in which the applicant lived. The actual recom- 
mendation by the Congressman, which was the next step 
beyond this, was not, however, legalized until 1852. 

At the close of President Tyler's Administration the 
prospects for any improvement were wholly unpromising. 
For nearly fifty years Congress had resisted every influ- 
ence in favor of proper education for naval officers. 
It was idle to cite the Military Academy at West Point 
as a precedent. It was the settled policy to favor the 
Army, and that answered every argument. Moreover, 
the Military Academy had been attacked as a nursery 
for aristocrats maintained by the horny-handed son of 
toil, who would not stand by and see republican insti- 
tutions subverted by the establishment of another such 
place at his expense. Moreover, even if he did — where 
should it be located ? Already it had been conclusively 
shown that the only proper place for it was St. Louis, 
also Memphis, also Norfolk, also Washington, also Gover- 
nor's Island, also Perth Amboy, and also New London, 
and also various other choice spots where disinterested 
owners of property stood ready to sell to the Government. 

Perilous Condition of the Midshipmen 141 

To propose its location at any one of these places 
meant fierce opposition from every one who wanted it at 
any of the others. The South, which rather claimed the 
Navy as its own institution, insisted on the naval school, 
if any were established, being situated in a Southern 
harbor, if for no other reason than that West Point was 
on the Hudson. The crop of disputes local and sectional 
in sight was immense, the opposition to spending any 
money for such a purpose manifest, the abuses worse 
than ever, and the need of reforming them an old story 
to which Congress had grown tired of listening. The 
darkest hour had come, and, as usual, it ushered in the 

From the author's " Shakings," 1867. 


Wherein through the Masterly Shrewdness and Diplomatic Skill 
of George Bancroft, Secretary of the Navy, the Naval School 
of the United States is Founded in Annapolis, Maryland, 
without Troubling a Reluctant Congress for either Law or 

GEORGE BANCROFT of Massachusetts— scholar, 
historian, orator, and statesman — became Secre- 
tary of the Navy in March, 1845. When he 
left that office eighteen months later the Naval School 
of the United States was established and in full operation 
at Annapolis, Maryland. The achievement was a master- 
piece of diplomacy. 

Mr. Bancroft was familiar, on the one hand, with the 
particular conditions in the service which so urgently 
needed betterment, and on the other, he was sufficiently 
versed in the devious ways of politics to know the futility 
of any preliminary appeals to Congress. He was a man 
of schools and universities, and appreciated the steadying 
and uplifting power of education. He had a practical 
knowledge of school-making, for in his early days he had 
himself organized and conducted for several years the 
famous Round Hill School at Northampton, Massachu- 
setts, where he put into successful practice enlightened 


The Founding of the Naval School 143 

modes of teaching widely different from those prevalent 
about him. Before he had accepted his portfolio he had 
fully matured the intention to establish for the Navy a 
school like that which the Army had at West Point. 

The approval by Secretary Henshaw of the plan for a 
naval school devised by Professor Chauvenet furnished, 
as has been said, a precedent for the exercise of the 
power of the Navy Department, and also indicated that 
such power was sufficient for the carrying of the project 
into effect. The revocation of this approval by Secre- 
tary Mason, while not destroying the precedent, stopped 
further progress. With the advent of the new Secretary, 
Professor Chauvenet became inspired with renewed hopes 
for the success of the plan, and called Mr. Bancroft's 
attention to it. 

Mr. Bancroft was too prudent a man unhesitatingly to 
revive the scheme which Secretary Henshaw had favored, 
without first taking counsel with the Navy. There was- 
a very respectable number of the older officers who be- 
lieved a naval school on shore to be altogether imprac^ 
ticable. They said " you could no more educate sailors, 
in a shore college than you could teach ducks to swim in 
a garret." Until a project could be devised which, even if 
it did not secure their support would, at least, not arouse 
their active opposition, it was premature to consider the 
extent of his powers. Moreover, it was also manifest 
that the plan as approved by Henshaw, besides being 
discredited by the act of Bancroft's immediate predeces- 
sor, had been before the Navy long enough to permit 
every one at all against it to accumulate an arsenal of 
antagonistic arguments. 

144 The United States Naval Academy 

Mr. Bancroft therefore shrewdly saw that the best 
course was to have a new plan emanate from the Navy 
itself, rather than for him to propose one ; for while the 
latter, would command outward respect in the service 
because of his ofificial position, it would be certain to be 
furiously assaulted in private wherever this could be 
safely and effectively done. 

A favorable opportunity presented itself ready to his 
hand. The examination of midshipmen for promotion 
was due in June (1845). The place where the Examining 
Board was to meet was the Naval Asylum School, which, 
thanks to Chauvenet and Ward, now furnished an object- 
lesson capable of doing more to refute the arguments 
about the absurdity of a land school for sailors than all 
the verbal counterblasts which could be invented. 

The Board itself was composed of men of high rank, 
who had the entire confidence of the service: Commo- 
dores George C. Read, Thomas Ap. C. Jones, and Mat- 
thew C. Perry, and Captains E. A. F. Lavellette and 
Isaac Mayo. These officers Bancroft at once constituted 
an advisory council with respect to the proposed school 
and asked of them suggestions as to the organization, the 
kind of studies advisable, and whether Fort Severn at 
Annapolis, which had been recommended to him as a 
suitable place, would answer the end in view, especially 
" as a vessel could be stationed there to serve as a school 
for gunnery." 

Bancroft's letter to these officers, dated June 13, 1845, 
written but little more than three months after he had 
taken office, is therefore the first official document per- 
taining to the existing Naval Academy. It presented 

^ > 

o « 

i e 







The Founding of the Naval School 145 

the whole subject so diplomatically that the Board, in- 
stead of dividing over the question of the possibility or 
expediency of any school at all, which Bancroft especially 
desired to prevent their doing, proceeded to wrangle 
gloriously over a merely collateral matter — the old issue 
of where such an institution ought to be situated. 

They were entirely harmonious in agreeing upon a 
Southern location, but Captain Mayo lived at Annapolis, 
and, as Professor Lockwood says, " believed that the 
world revolved around that place." Whether Mayo 
suggested the idea of selecting a site at the Maryland 
capital, or whether it was a remembrance of the old reso- 
lution of 1826 of the Legislature of that State, coupled 
with Secretary Upshur's economical notion of using an 
obsolete army post when nothing better seemed obtain- 
able, it is needless here to inquire. Perry always voted 
with Mayo, on general principles. Jones saw nothing 
good outside of Virginia, where he came from, and he, 
with another, insisted on an island at the mouth of the 
Elizabeth River. The others preferred islands in Chesa- 
peake Bay. 

They debated the matter for twelve days, and finally 
Jones and Mayo managed to agree upon Annapolis, 
whereupon the rest acceded. Bancroft had won his first 
victory. The value, necessity, expediency, and prac- 
ticability of a naval school on land had been practically 
conceded by a Board of distinguished naval officers. 

The site chosen was an old army post, known as Fort 
Severn, located on the point of land which forms the 
easternmost extremity of the city of Annapolis, and lies 
between the harbor and the Severn River. Windmill 

146 The United States Naval Academy- 
Point, as the peninsula was termed — taking its name 
from a mill which once stood on it^ — included an area of 
about nine acres, which had been purchased by the Gov- 
ernment in 1808, when the situation was considered of 
military importance. It had long since ceased to be so 
regarded, and was now occupied by a small garrison kept 
there to take care of the buildings. Poor as the place 
was, Bancroft saw that it was far less likely to challenge 
Congressional criticism than a more pretentious habita- 
tion, and, besides, as the Board of naval officers had said, 
the fact was undeniably true that it might " be enlarged 
and perfected at some future time." 

The plan for the new organization which the Board 
recommended showed that the matter had been one to 
which its members must have given considerable study 
in the past, and is worth stating in some detail. It pro- 
posed that a grade of naval cadet, inferior to that of 
midshipman, should be created by law, which would 
comprise the primary class of the Naval School, from 
which all appointments of midshipmen should be made 
after the candidate had passed through a course of ele- 
mentary professional education, and had been found pro- 
ficient by the authorities of the School, and a Board duly 
appointed to determine his fitness for a full career in the 
Navy. These candidates, it further advised, should be 
appointed in the same manner as the cadets at West 
Point, and allowed only sufficient pay to feed and clothe 
them. The officers of the establishment were to be a 
captain, who would be in chief command, a commander 
as executive officer, three lieutenants, two surgeons, a 
purser and his clerk and steward, a secretary to the 

The Founding of the Naval School 147 

superintendent, and an officer's guard of marines. In 
connection with the stationing of marines at the School, it 
was proposed for the first time in the history of the mid- 
shipmen that they should be taught infantry tactics. The 
academic staff was to comprise a professor and an assist- 
ant professor of the English language, constitutional and 
international law, a professor and assistant professor of 
natural philosophy and chemistry, and a professor of the 
French language, together with one instructor of drawing 
and mapping; and finally the Secretary was advised to 
send to the School a practice frigate and a small steamer 
for the purpose of illustrating instructions in naval 
tactics and the operation of steam-engines, both of which 
vessels should have full appointments of commissioned 
and warrant officers. The practice frigate was to be 
moored permanently, while the steamer was incidentally 
to be used for the transportation of provisions, etc., to 
the yard. 

The School and its organization having thus been pro- 
vided for, the Board recommended that acting midship- 
men or cadets should be required to enter a primary 
class, and remain two years attached to the School before 
receiving a warrant as midshipmen, and they were then 
to go to a sea-going ship for three years, after which they 
were to have leave of absence not exceeding three 
months, and then return to the practice frigate, where 
they would spend one year, after which they would be 
entitled to their second and final examination. The gen- 
eral arrangement of classes it was proposed should follow 
that of the Military Academy at West Point as closely as 
possible, and the same physical and mental qualifications 

148 The United States Naval Academy 

of applicants for admission be rigidly exacted. The age 
of admission was not to be less than thirteen or more 
than fifteen years. 

This scheme, afterwards followed in some essential feat- 
ures, for the present at least, involved one fatal difificulty. 
It made it necessary to go to Congress for money to 
carry it into effect. But now that Bancroft had the 
backing of so respectable and representative a body of 
naval officers, he was free to revert to the question of his 
own powers. Meanwhile he applied to Secretary Marcy 
for a transfer of Fort Severn to the Navy, and while this 
transaction was pending he appointed a second Board, 
composed of Commanders McKean, Buchanan, and Du- 
pont, to reconsider the subject, and to recommend place 
and persons. These men probably represented the 
younger element in the Navy as fully as Read and his as- 
sociates represented the older. This Board again found 
in favor of Annapolis. 

Secretary Bancroft had now succeeded in committing 
in favor of the scheme both of the elements — the old and 
the new — which always exist in the Navy personnel, and 
which occasionally oppose one another when the individ- ■ 
uals do not divide on ephemeral lines of disagreement. 

Meanwhile the Naval Asylum School had outstripped 
all the others in point of efficiency, mainly through the 
intelligent work of Chauvenet and Ward. Reinforcing 
them now was Professor Henry H. Lockwood. He had 
been graduated from West Point in 1836, commissioned 
as a lieutenant of artillery, and had served with distinc- 
tion through the Florida campaign of 1836-37. Sub- 
sequently he entered the Navy as a professor of 


The Founding of the Naval School 149 

mathematics, and in that capacity served on the frigate 
United States during her famous cruise in the Pacific. 
He had now returned with new laurels earned by serving 
as adjutant to the land forces during the capture of Mon- 
terey in 1842, and also by achieving marked success in 
teaching the youngsters on his ship. 

At the Asylum, Professor Chauvenet taught mathe- 
matics and navigation. Lieutenant Ward gave instruc- 
tion in gunnery, little knowledge of which was required 
at the examination for promotion, but which the mid- 
shipmen nevertheless were induced to study, thanks to 
Ward's able presentation of the subject and his own 
personal influence on them. Lockwood — who always 
was famous for the multiplicity of his attainments and 
the thoroughness with which he mastered all of them — 
relieved the other two instructors as occasion required. 

Bancroft, having now determined to act without re- 
course to Congress, was confronted with the serious 
problem of ways and means. To fail meant not only 
disaster to his project, but the arousing of sufificient 
hostility in Congress to make it not unlikely that that 
body might take measures to curtail the powers of the 
Navy Department, at least to an extent sufificient to pre- 
vent a repetition of the experiment. To succeed, on the 
other hand, equally involved much circumspection. 
What was needed was a modest success; something 
which would neither alarm nor elate, something which 
afforded no possible suggestion of political place or pick- 
ings — something, in fact, which would lead Congress not 
to interfere with the conditions which had favored it, 
even if it did not make those conditions any better. 

ISO The United States Naval Academy 

Having reached a clear appreciation of his problem, — and 
that is usually a long way on the road to solution — Ban- 
croft proceeded to solve it in the following manner : 

There were in the Navy at the time twenty-two profes- 
sors and three teachers of languages. Their aggregate 
yearly pay was $28,272. This money was not appro- 
priated by Congress specifically as pay, but was embodied 
in the yearly estimates for the Navy, and it was the 
custom of the Department to take this amount from the 
pay of the Navy and from the allowance for contingent 
expenses, putting its expenditure under the separate 
item of " instruction." One of the causes which pre- 
vented getting competent men to. serve as instructors 
was that when they were off duty their pay ($1200 per 
year) was stopped. 

The whole amount of the appropriation for instruction, 
however, remained always available, so that the less the 
number of professors actually ordered to duty, the greater 
the sum which was left at the Secretary's disposal to be 
devoted to " instruction " in any other way which he 
might see fit to adopt. 

There were certain of the professors who were much 
better adapted to their vocation than others. With the 
services of the latter Bancroft proposed to dispense, and 
to bring a few of the best men to a suitable place where 
all the midshipmen to be instructed could also be ordered. 
He would then be free to use the funds not paid to the 
professors relieved from duty for the support of the 

That plan was carried into effect. Eleven of the pro- 
fessors and all of the teachers of languages were placed 

The Founding of the Naval School 151 

on waiting orders. Finding their pay stopped and per- 
ceiving no further probabiUty of again receiving naval 
enaployment, they sought other pursuits. 

Out of the list of professors and teachers remaining in 
the service, Chauvenet and Lockwood were selected to 
go to Annapolis, and Lieutenant Ward and Passed Mid- 
shipman Marcy, who were associated with them, were 
likewise ordered to the new School. Commander Frank- 
lin Buchanan was chosen as its first commanding officer, 
and no better choice could have been made. He had 
entered the service in 1815, and had already achieved a 
high reputation as an energetic and efficient organizer. 
To Buchanan Secretary Bancroft now wrote, fully setting 
out his views, and this letter, practically the charter of the 
Naval Academy, is here given in full. It follows closely 
the lines originally suggested by Professor Chauvenet. It 
shows how completely the Secretary had appreciated the 
difficulties and obstacles which surrounded the efforts to 
train the young officers, the evils which had resulted, 
and the urgent need which existed for intelligent reform. 
It makes plainer than ever before the results which had 
come to pass by reason of the conditions affecting the 
midshipmen of the Navy, which in the preceding pages 
I have endeavored to depict. The letter is as follows : 

" Navy Department, August 7, 1845. 

' ' The Secretary of War, with the assent of the President, is 
prepared to transfer Fort Severn to the Navy Department, for 
the purpose of establishing there a school for midshipmen. 

' ' In carrying this design into effect, it is my desire to avoid 
all unnecessary expense; to create no places of easy service, 
no commands that are not strictly necessary; to incur no 

152 The United States Naval Academy- 
charge that may demand new annual appropriations, but by a 
more wise application of moneys already appropriated and 
offices already authorized to provide for the better education 
of the young officers of the Navy. It is my design not to 
create new offices, but by economy of administration to give 
vigor of action to those which at present are available; not to 
invoke new legislation, but to execute more effectually exist- 
ing laws. Placed by their profession in connection with the 
world, visiting in their career of service every climate and 
every leading people, the officers of the American Navy, if 
they gain but opportunity for scientific instruction, may make 
themselves as distinguished for culture as they have been for 
gallant conduct. 

" To this end it is proposed to collect the midshipmen who 
from time to time are on shore, and give them occupation, 
during their stay on land, in the study of mathematics, nautical 
astronomy, theory of morals, international law, gunnery, use 
of steam, the Spanish and the French languages, and other 
branches essential in the present day to the accomplishment 
of a naval officer. 

" The effect of such an employment of the midshipmen 
cannot but be favorable to them and to the service. At 
present they are left, when waiting orders on shore, masters 
of their own motions, without steady occupation, young and 
exulting in the relief from the restraints of discipline on ship- 
board. In collecting them at Annapolis for purposes of in- 
struction, you will begin with the principle that a warrant in 
the Navy, far from being an excuse for licentious freedom, is 
to be held a pledge for subordination, industry, and regularity, 
for sobriety and assiduous attention to duty. Far from con- 
senting that the tone of discipline and morality should be less 
than at universities or colleges of our country, the President 
expects such supervision and arrangement as shall make of 
them an exemplary body of which the country may be proud. 

" To this end you have all the powers for discipline con- 
ferred by the laws of the United States, and the certainty that 
the Department will recommend no one for promotion who 
is proved unworthy of it from idleness or ill conduct, or 

The Founding of the Naval School 153. 

continuing ignorance, and who cannot bear the test of a. 
rigid examination. 

' ' For the purposes of instruction the Department can select 
from among twenty-two professors and three teachers of lan- 
guages. This force, which is now almost wasted by the manner 
in which it is applied, may be concentrated in such a manner 
as to produce the most satisfactory results. Besides, the list 
of chaplains is so great that they cannot all be employed at sea 
and the range of selection of teachers may be enlarged by 
taking from their number some who would prefer giving in- 
struction at the school to serving afloat. The object of the- 
Department being to make the simplest and most effective 
arrangement for a school, you will be the highest officer in the 
establishment, and will be entrusted with its government. It 
is my wish, if it be possible, to send no other naval officer tO' 
the school except such as may be able and willing to give in- 
struction. Among the officers, junior to yourself, there are 
many whose acquisitions and tastes may lead them to desire- 
such situations. For this end the Department would cheer- 
fully detach three or four of the lieutenants and passed mid- 
shipmen, who, while they would give instruction, would be 
ready to aid you in affairs of discipline and government. 

" Thus the means for a good naval school are abundant, 
though they have not yet been collected together and applied. 
One great difficulty remains to be considered. At our col- 
leges and at West Point young men are trained in a series of 
consecutive years. The laws of the United States do not 
sanction a preliminary school for the Navy; they only provide 
for the instruction of officers who already are in the Navy. 
The pupils of the Naval School being therefore officers in the 
public service, will be liable at all times to be called from their 
studies and sent on public duty. Midshipmen, too, on their 
return from sea at whatever season of the year, will be sent tO' 
the school. Under these circumstances you will be obliged to- 
arrange your classes in such a manner as will leave opportunity 
for those who arrive to be attached to classes suited to the 
stage of their progress in their studies. It will be difficult to. 
arrange a system of studies which will meet this emergency, 

1 54 The United States Naval Academy 

but with the fixed resolve which you will bring to the work and 
with perseverance you will succeed. 

' ' Having thus expressed to you some general views, I leave 
you, with such assistance as you may require, to prepare and 
lay before this Department, for its approbation, a plan for the 
organization of the Naval School at Fort Severn, Annapolis. 

" The posts to which you and those associated with you will 
be called are intended to be posts of labor, but they will also 
be posts of the highest usefulness and consideration. To 
yourself, to whose diligence and care the organization of the 
school is entrusted, will belong in a good degree, the responsi- 
bility of a wise arrangement. Do not be discouraged by the 
many inconveniences and difficulties which you will certainly 
encounter, and rely implicitly on this Department as disposed 
to second and sustain you under the law in every effort to im- 
prove the character of the younger branch of the service. 
" I am, respectfully, your obedient servant, 

" George Bancroft. 
" Commander Franklin Buchanan, 

" United States Navy, Washington." 


Mg;;-'" ''"'"Naval 'School ,i : :„,„,;j.,.: 

■|Fo«iided Ociober lOtti^SjJS,,, 

f JAMES K. POlM,,); 

;;;,j Pjlesident of tte U. St'i^ii|L 

1 'tIGEO. BANCROFT,';',!,,;;': 



Wherein we Survey the Grounds and Buildings of the Naval School 
as they originally Were and Recall the Life of the Midship- 
men who first Went there, and finally Reach the Period 
when it Became Necessary to Appeal to Congress for Help, 
the which that Body — being Moved thereto by the Charm- 
ing Personality and Great Ability of Secretary Bancroft — 
Promptly and Gracefully Accorded 

FORT Severn was duly transferred by the War De- 
partment to the Navy on August 15, 1845, and a 
fortnight afterwards Secretary Bancroft published 
his "plan" which, together with the "regulations" 
subsequently prepared by Commander Buchanan, gov- 
erned the workings of the School until 1850. 

The scheme provided that professors and instructors 
should be selepted so far as practicable from ofiScers of 
the Navy. It established tlie Academic Board, which 
transacts all the business of the School and decides on 
the merits of students. It specified the ages for entrance 
as between thirteen and sixteen years, and also the 
scholastic qualifications. The latter were very simple, 
being merely ability to read and write well and a know- 
ledge of geography and arithmetic. Bancroft was astute 
enough to see that the imposition of any higher stand- 
ard than this would have imperilled the success of the 


156 The United States Naval Academy- 
enterprise. He feared that stock argument of the dema- 
■ gogue, — that rich people could give their sons better facili- 
ties for preliminary instruction, and that, therefore, there 
would be discrimination against those less favored by for- 
tune. It was finally concluded that if the standard of ad- 
mission at the Naval School were placed no higher than a 
boy could easily be qualified for at the village schoolhouse, 
then all of the students would start on the same footing 
and come up for promotion after having gone through 
precisely the same course of study. 

As the Secretary already had perceived, however, the 
School could exist only to instruct ofificers already in the 
Navy ; therefore his plan necessarily provided that 
" when an acting midshipman receives his appointment 
he is to be attached to the School subject to the exigen- 
cies of the service." Semi-annual examinations were 
ordered, and midshipmen found deficient were to be 
" restored to their friends." Those passing were sent to 
sea for six months, and then on a favorable report given 
their warrants, with another opportunity to be " re- 
stored " if the report was unfavorable. 

Shore duty for midshipmen — a prolific cause of their 
irregularities — was abolished, and all of them when not 
on leave sent to the School. The course of study pre- 
scribed included " English grammar and composition, 
arithmetic, geography, and history, navigation, gunnery, 
and the use of steam ; the Spanish and French languages, 
and such other branches desirable to the accomplishment 
of a naval officer as circumstances may render practic- 
able." The professors were required to keep records of 
all recitations and report to the Superintendent. 

First Superintendent of the U. S. Naval Academy. 

The Naval School of 1845 157 

The complete Academic staff was duly organized as 
follows : 

Commander Franklin Buchanan, Superintendent. 

Lieutenant James H. Ward, Executive Officer and 
Instructor in Gunnery and Steam. 

Surgeon John A. Lockwood, Instructor in Chemistry. 

Chaplain George Jones, Instructor in English Branches. 

Professor Henry H. Lockwood, Instructor in Natural 

Professor William Chauvenet, Instructor in Mathe- 
matics and Navigation. 

Professor Arsfene N. Girault, Instructor in French. 

Passed Midshipman S. Marcy, Instructor in Mathe- 

At eleven o'clock on the morning of October lo, 1845, 
all hands assembled in one of the recitation-rooms, and the 
Superintendent, after a brief but pointed address in which 
he announced he should exact rigid compliance with all 
laws, orders, and regulations, declared the School open. 

The midshipmen of the '39 date (so called from the 
year of their entrance into the Navy, 1839) were the last 
to report at the Naval Asylum for examination for 
promotion. Of the fifty who now came to Annapolis, 
thirty-six were old hands of the '40 date, and these were 
now eligible for promotion in their turn. With the 
thirteen youngsters of the '41 date, affairs were different. 
Their promotion was still distant, and ordinarily they 
would have been on shore duty, and, if attending school 
at all, they would have been under no restraint, save the 
lax control which prevailed at the Naval Asylum and the 
navy yard establishments. They seem to have felt rather 

158 The United States Naval Academy 

injured on the whole that they should have been deprived 
of their shore fling to have their noses thus held to the 
educational grindstone. Finally there were seven who 
had just entered, and they, being totally green, took 
whatever came as a matter of course. The newcomers 
were under sixteen years of age. The " oldsters " were 
of all ages from eighteen to twenty-seven, and the more 
venerable among them were naturally the most vehement 
in denouncing the innovation which sent them back to 
be schoolboys. But they had to bear with it whether 
they liked it or not. 

The old buildings at the ancient army post at Annapo- 
lis to which the midshipmen now repaired had been 
termed by Secretary Bancroft " a modest shelter for the 
pupils," and they certainly deserved no more compli- 
mentary description. The grounds, which were rough, 
and practically uncared for, were bounded on two sides 
by the harbor and the river, and on the other two by a 
wall which ran from the harbor northwesterly and then 
northeasterly to the Severn. The apex of the angle 
of the wall was about 150 feet within the present easterly 
gate, and near that point was located the gate-house, 
through the arch of which entrance to the grounds was 

On the bay side the shore curved inward nearly to a 
large mulberry tree, which, after the sea-wall was built 
and the land filled in behind it, stood in the centre of the 
plain. The old tree remained as a landmark and range- 
guide for vessels in the harbor until May, 1895, when it 
was found to be so badly decayed as to render its 
removal necessary. 

The Naval School of 1845 ^59 

On the river side some of the buildings were less than 
fifty feet from the shore, at which there was a steep em- 
bankment. There was no sea-wall. Outside the bank 
and along the western portion of the river front the land 
was low and marshy. 

On entering the enclosure one proceeded for a short 
distance along a straight path which terminated in a cir- 
cular road surrounding a ring of poplar trees. These 
began to die in 1856, but some of them, gnarled and 
twisted, still remain (1900), covered with ivy and creep- 
ers. To the left of the entering visitor and about mid- 
way the western wall and against it was a little structure 
containing two rooms and an entrance-hall. In this 
some of the midshipmen were quartered, and it was 
called " The Abbey." 

To the right, with a side path leading to it, was the 
Army Commandant's house, the best edifice in the en- 
closure, and already more than a hundred years old. 
Yet it stood for more than fifty years longer, and was 
not demolished until its cracking walls and settling floors 
made it unsafe for habitation. This became the quarters 
of the Superintendent. Adjoining it were four dwellings 
a story and a half in height, which were comparatively 
new, having been built in 1834. At the opening of the 
School one of them was assigned to Lieutenant Ward 
and the others to professors. Three years afterwards 
their roofs were raised to admit another story. The row 
was and still is called Buchanan Row, and during the 
summer of 1898 it furnished quarters for Admiral Cervera 
and the senior officers of his squadron who were captured 
at Santiago. 

i6o The United States Naval Academy 

Beyond these houses again came the quartermaster's 
office, a small brick dwelling built against the boundary 
Tvall. This was also soon enlarged, and became the resi- 
dence of the Chaplain of the School. 

Between the Superintendent's house and the river was 
a building originally devoted to the unmarried enhsted 
men. It was two stories high and divided into large bar- 
racks. In the lower story were two rooms, separated 
by a hall through the middle of the building. The 
lower floor of one barrack became the midshipmen's 
mess-room, and the lower floor of the other, the kitchen. 
The apartments on the upper floor were recitation-rooms. 
At some period a room in this building appears to have 
been used as a chapel. 

From a point between the Commandant's house and 
the barracks just described ran a row of Lombardy pop- 
lars, in line about parallel to the buildings now known as 
Stribling Row or the " old quarters," and terminating 
at the fort which stood at the extremity of the peninsula. 
Facing the path which followed the trees was a one-story 
wooden building, about sixty feet in length, and divided 
into four sections, each having a door and a window 
opening upon the long veranda. This was originally 
quarters for married men, but it now became those of 
the midshipmen, who were packed into it four in a room. 
They named the house " Apollo Row." It was a 
wretched ramshackle structure, with doors and windows 
which did not fit, and which let in the rain and snow in 
winter. Midshipman Edward Simpson of the '40 date — 
the pioneers in residence — lived in No. 3 Apollo Row, 
and he says that the incoming rain was rather the more 

The Naval School of 1845 161 

objectionable, " as the temperature we were able to sus- 
tain in winter with one grate fire was not sufficiently high 
to melt the snow." 

Farther along the walk in the direction of the fort was 
a rather more pretentious two-story building, constructed 
as the post hospital. Here a large number of midship- 
men were quartered, and this edifice was christened 
" Rowdy Row." Between it and the river there was at 
one time a bowling-alley. Still proceeding toward the fort 
was a brick bake-house, which was converted to the uses 
of a lot of youngsters who had made a cruise around the 
Horn in the frigate Brandywine. They at once named 
their quarters " Brandywine Cottage," and at all times 
and seasons there came from it the refrain : 

" Brandywine, Brandywine, 
The roaring Brandywine.'" 

If the visitor should now cross the plain passing the 
mulberry tree, he would find against the boundary wall 
still another edifice which had been originally devoted to 
the purpose of a blacksmith's shop, but which now also 
was pressed into service as midshipmen's quarters. 

It will be seen, therefore, that the arriving midshipmen 
— all of the '40 date — were pretty well scattered within 
the enclosure, and that they divided themselves and 
named their abodes according to their own ideas of the 
fitness of things. Thus Apollo Row gained its title from 
the superior elegance ascribed to, or perhaps claimed by, 
its occupants. Rowdy Row was the scene of the most 
hilarity and general uproariousness. Brandywine Cot- 
tage, as has been said, was the abode of the Brandywine' s 

1 62 The United States Naval Academy 

midshipmen, and the blacksmith's shop received the 
name of the " Gas House," because the inhabitants, led 
by Midshipman (subsequently Brigadier-General) Nelson, 
achieved a certain celebrity on account of what Professor 
Lockwood has since called their " well-known way of 
gassing about everything and everybody. 

Of all of these abodes, the Abbey originally enjoyed 
the best reputation. In harmony with its name, its 
occupants were supposed to be pious and of a serious 
disposition. No skylarking disturbed its serenity, no 
roaring choruses came from its portals, and no illicit 
lights appeared after hours at its windows. So orderly 
and well behaved was it that the ofificer of the day was 
prone to omit it from his regular inspections. But when 
its extreme goodness came at last to look unnatural, sus- 
picion lay but a step beyond. Then followed a sudden 
raid of the authorities and a swift descent from grace, for 
behold a tunnel through the wall at the back of the 
house stood revealed, out of which its staid dwellers 
regularly escaped into town, or, as they called it, 
" Frenched." The silence which had prevailed at night 
was the silence of solitude, for the youngsters supposed 
to be peacefully studying or sleeping were indulging in 
hilarious larks outside. And when they were not at 
that they were receiving contraband bottles through the 
hole. So fell the Abbey, and Rowdy Row with open 
arms welcomed it to congenial wickedness. 

Fort Severn itself, which still stands, in those days 
consisted of a stone wall fourteen feet in height, enclos- 
ing an area about one hundred feet in diameter, within 
which was a small circular magazine of brick having a 

The Naval School of 1845 163 

conical roof which rose above the top of the wall. The 
space between wall and magazine was covered by a plat- 
form, upon which were mounted eight guns en barbette. 
The parapet was two or three feet higher than the plat- 
form, and the top was sodded. On the land side without 
the wall was a furnace for heating shot. 

The midshipmen were exercised at first at great guns 
with this battery. Later Lieutenant Ward erected a 
shed on the bay shore and near the fort, where he 
mounted four navy 24-pounders; and these were em- 
ployed for target-firing by the midshipmen, although not 
for long, for in 185 1 a wooden wall was built on the fort, 
covered by a conical roof, which was surrnounted by a 
cupola and pierced with ports fitted up like those of a 
ship. At these ports modern guns were arranged, while 
outside of the wall on the parapet several mortars were 
installed. The midshipmen drilled at the guns in the 
fort until 1866, when the building was converted into a 

Whether the midshipmen of the date of '40 were in- 
herently any better behaved than their comrades of '41, 
or whether it was because they were cramming for their 
examination for promotion, it is hardly possible to decide ; 
but it is fairly certain that they comported themselves on 
the whole much better than the '41 date, and controlled 
their younger brethren at least sufficiently to permit the 
School to be well and fairly started. They recognized 
that for midshipmen to study such subjects as natural 
philosophy and chemistry was something entirely new in 
the history of the Navy, and that the time when a 
knowledge of seamanship and practical navigation alone 

1 64 The United States Naval Academy 

was sufficient qualification for advancement had gone 
by. They worked hard, and got liberty (if not under 
quarantine) to enjoy the delights of Annapolis on Satur- 
day nights. 

Then the " Spirits Club," whereof Midshipman Ed- 
ward Simpson was Grand-Master, would meet at some 
place where the oysters and the punch were good and 
listen to the " Song of the Spirits " duly chanted by their 
shepherd, who afterwards marched them back into the 
fold. About the worst thing they did on these occasions 
was to confiscate the oil lamps on the city lamp-posts 
and pile them up in front of the school gate. They 
organized a dramatic company, and gave representations 
in the disused theatre in the city, with such impressive 
effect upon the inhabitants that the latter promptly de- 
cided that the playhouse should be abolished and a church 
erected in its stead — so settling a long-mooted question. 
Thus was founded the Presbyterian Church on Duke of 
Gloucester Street, and " thus," triumphantly remarked 
Midshipman Simpson (stage-manager, subsequently Rear- 
Admiral) many years later, " the Academy may claim 
credit for having spread religious influences in the com- 
munity. " 

They gave the first midshipman's ball in the recitation- 
rooms of the old unmarried men's barracks and served 
supper in the mess-hall, and there was a great attendance, 
not only from Annapolis but from the eastern shore and 
outlying counties, and even from (then) distant Balti- 
more and Washington; and finally, mirabile dictu, for 
were they not sailors ? they organized a military com- 
pany among themselves, made the brilliant and always 

The Naval School of 1845 165 

serviceable Simpson their captain, and studied Scott's 
Tactics and the manual of arms; a proceeding which 
excited the contemptuous ire of their juniors, as we shall 
see hereafter. 

The general idea now was to keep the students at the 
School for a year ; then they were to serve a probationary 
term of six months at sea, when they received their war- 
rants; then they completed a full term of three years' 
sea service ; then they returned to the School for a year, 
and then they were examined for promotion. But there 
was much confusion. 

The midshipmen who entered in 1840 (forty-seven in 
all) were graduated in 1846, 1847, and 1848. The date 
of 1 841 had 136 members, and they strung along through 
the years 1847, 1848, 1849, and 1850. The date of 1842 
had but seven men in it, and they were graduated in 
1848-49. There were no appointments at all in 1843 
or 1844, in consequence of the Act of 1842 limiting the 
number of midshipmen. The date of 1845 had but three 
members, graduated in 1851 and 1852. The dates of 
1846, 1847, 1848, and 1849 were all graduated in the 
sixth and seventh year after entrance, the date of 1850 in 
the sixth year, and then came the complete change of the 
organization which will be noted in proper place here- 
after. They all have terminated their active careers, 
those youngsters of the " forties." They have hoisted 
their flags as rear-admirals, and worn their stars, and 
passed into honorable retirement. 

Commander Buchanan lost no time in getting the 
School in running order. The midshipmen were dis- 
tributed in two classes : the junior class including those 

1 66 The United States Naval Academy 

who had just been admitted and had not been to sea, 
and the senior class, those who were entitled to examina- 
tion for the grade of passed midshipmen at the end of 
the academic year. Of course this left unclassified those 
who, like the '41 date, had been to sea but had not be- 
come entitled to examination for promotion, and they 
were put in anywhere; some were assigned to the senior 
class and some to the junior, some, in certain recitations, 
to sections of the senior class and in others to sections of 
the junior, and so on as every individual's specific re- 
quirements seemed to indicate. The result was little 
short of chaotic. 

The studies of the junior class were arithmetic, ele- 
ments of algebra and geometry, navigation as far as the 
sailings and the use of the quadrant, geography, English 
grammar and composition, and the French or Spanish 
language ; while the class also attended lectures on 
natural philosophy, ordnance, and chemistry delivered 
to the seniors. 

The senior class studied algebra, geometry, plane and 
spherical trigonometry, nautical astronomy, navigation, 
descriptive astronomy, mechanics, optics, magnetism, 
electricity, ordnance, gunnery, the use of steam, history, 
composition, and the French or Spanish language. 

That is to say, they " studied " those things, but what 
they ever learned about most of them is another ques- 
tion. It was a far cry from these attainments back to 
the simple acquirements — seamanship and a modicum of 
elementary navigation — which were all that were neces- 
sary to insure passing the examination for promotion 
but a year before. 

The Naval School of 1845 ^^7 

If the oldsters of '40 accepted these new studies as 
" all in the day's work," their comrades of '41, not 
having the same incentive of approaching promotion, 
declined so to regard them, and, on the contrary, con- 
templated them — especially electricity and magnetism, 
of which very few individuals in this country outside of 
college professors knew anything at all, and they mighty 
little — with trepidation, and bewailed the hard fate which 
had befallen them. As for military drill, which the '40 
midshipmen practised voluntarily, their juniors would 
have none of it, and when it was enforced on them, as 
will appear hereafter, denounced it as the crowning 

It may be asked why the strong hand of authority did 
not repress at the outset the boyish lawlessness which 
now rapidly augmented. The reason simply was that 
the hand of authority was not strong, or, at least, did 
not so consider itself, as long as the explicit sanction of 
Congress was lacking. The great result to be achieved 
was not a school perfectly organized and disciplined, but 
a school simply in running order before the inevitable 
time should come when nothing more could be accom- 
plished without Congressional aid. 

In the late summer of 1846 that period arrived. The 
old professors who had supplied the cruising ships and 
the early schools had gone or become few and far be- 
tween. In their place there was the Naval School work- 
ing well. If Congress should hesitate in granting an 
appropriation for the pay of these instructors because 
they no longer existed — there was the School, it was to 
be argued, doing the work. Nor was Mr. Bancroft the 

1 68 The United States Naval Academy 

man to wait for such hesitation to develop itself. He 
calmly forced the issue and directly asked Congress to 
provide for an amount not exceeding $28,000, to be ex- 
pended under the direction of the Secretary of the Navy 
" for repairs, improvements, and instruction at Fort 
Severn, Annapolis, Md." 

Then he personally promoted the measure by every 
influence in his power. It passed the House with little 
difificulty, but there were rumors of sharp opposition in 
the Senate. The Secretary brought all his diplomacy 
and skill to bear, and at last had the profound satisfac- 
tion of receiving the appropriation by an ample majority, 
and of seeing the Naval School of the United States then 
become duly organized by law. 

Thus ended the long fight for it. Intelligence, shrewd- 
ness, and diplomacy had accomplished within eight 
months that which all the recommendations to Congress 
of nearly all the Secretaries of the Navy for the last 
fifty years had failed to achieve. 

Three days after the bill became law (August 13, 
1846), Secretary Bancroft directed the Superintendent 
to enlarge the buildings and construct new ones sufficient 
to accommodate one hundred midshipmen. 


Wherein is Told how the Midshipmen from Sea Came to the School 
and how they Fell into the Hands of one Lockwood — a 
Shore Warrior — who Wickedly Made them Drill like " So- 
jers"; and further of their Various Struggles against the 
Discipline which Gradually Kept Getting rather the Better 
of them, and Lastly of the Disappearance of the Naval School 
to Give Place to the United States Naval Academy 

THE first Board of professors worked like beavers, 
for upon it devolved the arrangement of the de- 
tails of the course. Ward and Girault, both men 
of positive opinions, speedily clashed, but the conse- 
quences were good, since they brought the Superinten- 
dent to active participation in the work of the Board, 
as its oiificial head, a position which he has ever since 
retained. The division of time then established was, 
school from 8 A.M. to noon; recreation and dinner from 
noon to 1.30 P.M.; school again until 4.30 P.M., except 
on Saturday; recreation and supper from 4.30 to 6 P.M., 
and then study until 10 P.M. 

The marking system was peculiar and original. If a 
midshipman made a perfect recitation he received a 
merit mark of + 10, and so on downwards, according to 
the instructor's judgment. The demerit system, how- 
ever, was not based upon general delinquencies, and the 


17° The United States Naval Academy 

maximum bad mark was — lo. Under this somewhat 
illogical plan the student who made a perfect recitation 
received -|- lo, but if he were tardy without excuse he 
received — 5, so that his net mark was + S ; or, if he 
got + 10 on a given day, and on the following day con- 
cluded not to recite and therefore had — 10 inflicted on 
him, he was in Just the same position as if he had not 
recited on both days because of illness or other good 

At the end of the year the average merit of the mid- 
shipmen was made out from their marks, and their rela- 
tive rank at the final examination was determined by 
combining their marks for the studies pursued in the 
School with those given by the Board of Examiners for 
proficiency in seamanship. Failure to pass a final 
examination in any of the branches other than seaman- 
ship and gunnery was not fatal, provided the mark 
obtained in the latter was high; but a breakdown in 
" professionals " caused the youngster, in the favorite 
words of the Secretary, to be " restored to his friends," 
unless he manifested unusual talent, and in such case he 
was allowed a second trial at the next recurring examina- 
tion. But this involved being " turned back," and 
taking rank not with his original classmates but with 
those with whom he was finally examined. Another 
failure terminated his naval career. 

As might be expected, the failures of students who had 
come to the School with strong political backing soon 
brought about friction between the Navy Department 
and the examining committee of the Academic Board. 
A young Hungarian presented himself, with the personal 

Early Days of the Naval School 171 

endorsements of the Secretary of the Navy, of several 
influential Congressmen, and of the Superintendent him- 
self. He failed utterly on his entrance examination. 
Strong pressure was put upon Lockwood, Girault, and 
Jones to admit him nevertheless; but they steadfastly 
held to their decision, and announced that an official 
order would have no other effect than to elicit a detailed 
report " showing more strikingly the great defects of the 
candidate." That seems to have been the Board's 
Declaration of Independence. 

So the School continued despite its many vicissitudes, 
thanks to the patient and determined men who were 
managing it ; and Congress willingly enough repeated its 
appropriation of $28,200 in 1847, and authorized the pur- 
chase of twelve acres more land. This addition extended 
the grounds to the northwest, to the road leading from 
the upper gate to the steamboat wharf, the town bound- 
ary line running from the old gate and coinciding with a 
row of trees in rear of the Herndon Monument. 

Meanwhile the war with Mexico had broken out. 
Most of the midshipmen went at once into active service, 
and those at the School began to apply for detachment 
and for duty with the fleet. When this was denied their 
discontent grew rapidly, and the difficulties of enforcing 
discipline became enhanced. The meetings held " be- 
hind the Battery " were, however, the best safety-valve 
for the indignant denunciations of the Navy Depart- 
ment, which " kept men at school when they were only 
too anxious to join their ships." Then news began to 
arrive of the gallant deeds which their comrades were 

172 The United States Naval Academy 

There was Wingate Pillsbury, of the '41 date — which 
had members in the audience — who while chasing with 
the launch of the Mississippi, in sight of his ship off Vera 
Cruz, had his vessel thrown on her beam ends by a 
squall. With his crew he managed to keep his hold 
upon the overturned craft until he saw that one of his 
men who could not swim was nearly exhausted; and 
then, in attempting to give his place, which was more 
secure, to the sailor, he was swept away by a heavy sea. 
That was in July, 1846. 

In the following spring, when the naval battery was 
established before Vera Cruz, the midshipmen of the 
fleet drew lots for the privilege of serving in it, although 
upon it the Mexicans concentrated their heaviest fire. 
Midshipman Allen McLane leaped through an embrasure, 
and under a fearful shower of bullets coolly cut away the 
brushwood which impeded the sighting of his gun ; and 
Midshipman Shubrick met his death by a shot which 
took his head from his shoulders as he crouched leisurely 
pointing his piece. 

After that came the loss of the ill-starred brig Somers, 
upset by a squall in Vera Cruz harbor. Passed Midship- 
men Clemson and Hynson insisted upon their men taking 
refuge in the one available boat, but before further aid 
could reach them, their ship sunk. Clemson clung to a 
spar, which he deliberately abandoned when he saw that 
it was inadequate to support all who were hanging to it. 

There is a simple marble monument standing in the 
Naval Academy grounds just beside the observatory, 
which bears the inscriptions : 

"To Passed Midshipmen Henry A. Clemson and John R, 

Early Days of the Naval School 1 12) 

Hynson, Lost with the U. S. Brig Somers off Vera Cruz, De- 
cember 8, 1846. This monument is erected by the Passed and 
other Midshipmen of the United States Navy as a token of 


" To Midshipmen J. W. Pillsbury and T. B. Shubrick, 
killed near Vera Cruz in the discharge of their duties. ' ' 

The youngsters who were kept fretting at the Academy- 
put up the stone, the subscription being started in 1847 
and the monument completed during the following year. 

Many were the yarns which came back to the young- 
sters " behind the Battery " which showed the humorous 
side of Mexican campaigning, and gleeful their shouts of 
laughter thereat. There was Midshipman Young, for 
instance, who had wandered off with a despatch to the 
dragoon commander before Medellin on an ancient 
cavalry charger which he had not the slightest idea how 
to manage. He arrived just when the charge was 
sounded. The old war-horse promptly obeyed the bugle, 
and Young of course went with him, thus gaining the un- 
sought honor of leading the dragoons and the cordial com- 
pliments of the colonel upon his remarkable gallantry. 

Midshipman Parker also earned fame by his landing of 
a 32-pounder gun from the Potomac. The gun had not 
been put on skids, and how it was to be got out of the 
boat after the latter had been beached was a problem. 
Parker solved it by taking the gun out through the bottom 
of the boat. His ride behind four wild mules hitched to 
an army wagon, over a terrible road frequently blocked by 
other vehicles, after one of his mules had had his tail shaved 
off by a cannon-shot, might well have inspired a poem. 

174 The United States Naval Academy 

If the youngsters at the Academy could not get away, 
Superintendent Buchanan, after many efforts, proved 
more fortunate. Upon his departure to the front, he 
was succeeded as Superintendent, in March, 1847, by 
Lieutenant George P. Upshur; and some months later 
Lieutenant Ward gave place to Lieutenant John A. 
Dahlgren, who became instructor in gunnery, in which 
he was the best expert in the service. The task of 
teaching, however, was most irksome to him, for he was 
engrossed with the development of his own inventions at 
the Washington Navy Yard, and preferred to make the 
then long journey to Annapolis three times a week rather 
than leave his beloved work. 

During the academic year 1847-48 the attendance of 
the midshipmen was most irregular. To examine thirty- 
seven of them for admission, thirty-one sessions of the 
Academic Board were convened. They came in one at 
a time at intervals of a few days. Orders detaching 
them singly and in groups were received almost daily. 
No practice ships had been provided, hence there was no 
way of teaching seamanship or great-gun drill afloat. 
English grammar and infantry tactics were taught only 
on Saturdays; and the recitations were little more than 

As for discipline, that which Buchanan had managed 
to maintain practically departed when Upshur took 
charge. He was an amiable, gentle, quiet man, of the 
type that inspires affection rather than fear, conscientious 
in the performance of the duties of his position as he saw 
them, but never perhaps quite appreciating what they 
really were. The unruly youngsters under him were not 

Early Days of the Naval School 1 75 

troubled by sentiments of any sort, and they made his- 
life a burden. The nocturnal revels of the " Owls " and 
the " Crickets" stirred Annapolis to the depths, and 
made the earlier symposia of the " Spirits Club " seem 
mildly tranquil by contrast. They would leave the yard 
at night on wild larks, which frequently ended in pitched 
battles with the townspeople, and when word came 
within the gates that a row was in progress the whole 
class would arm themselves with pokers and whatever 
weapons were at hand and rush out to the fray. 

They came to breakfast when they got ready, and in 
dressing-gowns. They held " reformed banquets " at 
night, with the windows covered with blankets, and 
regaled themselves with whiskey and cigars, and crackers 
and cheese, and swapped yarns and sang songs until mid- 
night, leaving the room for the inspecting ofificer next 
day with empty bottles lying on the floor, half-smoked 
cigars scattered about, and the furniture topsy-turvy;, 
and this without a thought of being called to account ; 
and, in fact, with little likelihood of that result coming- 
to pass. 

There is a song of these very early days of the Acad- 
emy (the midshipman author of which is unknown) which 
has embalmed in it much of the history of the time, and 
which runs as follows : 



A was an angle obtuse as a ball. 
B was a blackboard where reefers did scrawl. 
C was a piece of chalk white as the snow. 
D was a drunken mid. made a zero. 

176 The United States Naval Academy 


" Oh middy, dear middy," old Chauvenet 'd say, 
"I '11 give to you ten if you '11 solve this to-day." 
I winked and I blinked at old Chauvenet's shoe. 
And bilged like a middy when drunk ought to do. 


E was the entrance through the fort wall. 
F was the fellows that through it did crawl. 
G was old Girault's permission we took. 
H was the honorable liberty-book. 



I was the irksome problem to learn. 

J was a jug of gin no mid. would spurn. 

K was the kalendar that kept the school run. 

L was the limber to old Lockwood's gun. 



M was the mayor who sold us our boots. 
N was the number to extract the square roots. 
O was an object from which all would run. 
P was the prolonge to gun Number One. 


Q was the question that no mid. dare touch. 

R was old Roseygo stuttering Dutch. 

S was a sand-fly, a very great sport. 

T was the twelve that played the deuce in the fort. 







I o 

Early Days of the Naval School 177 


U was old Upshur out in the rain. 

V was the vagrants he could not restrain. 
W the whiskey that made a bad mess. 

X was a symbol of math, to guess. 

Y also helped to torture the brain. 
Z is the zenith of glory to gain. 


Of course this is the merest doggerel, and calculated, 
besides, to convey an entirely erroneous idea of the 
general character of the midshipmen of that day. They 
were a careless and jovial lot, but they were far from 
being- dissipated as a class. Those who drank in any wise 
to excess, and they were not many, had very brief careers 
in the Navy. It will be understood, therefore, that this 
song does not celebrate the virtues of the very respectable 
percentage of the '41 date which observed regulations 
and attended to its studies (which, of course, includes all 
of its members who are now rear-admirals), but rather 
the derelictions of the minority, , and especially of that 
wayward portion of it known as the " Owls." It is of 
much interest, however, for the historical facts which are 
hidden in its obscure allusions. 

In those days, the midshipmen were allowed to go into 
the town every afternoon after study hours were over ; 
the only formality required being the writing of their 
names in the liberty-book kept by the ofificer of the day 
in his ofifice at the gate, while opposite the name were re- 
corded the time of going and the time of return. Every 
morning the liberty-book was sent to the Superintendent 
for inspection, and midshipmen who were found not to 
have returned before 10 P.M. were generally called upon 

178 The United States Naval Academy 

for an explanation. It required only a moderate amount 
of good behavior to obtain freedom of entrance and 
exit at the proper hours; but to the " Owls," at least, 
there was nothing spicy and interesting in behaving 
themselves, hence they preferred to enter and leave the 
grounds surreptitiously by the process called "French- 
ing " or " Frenching it," or, in other words, taking 
French leave. This was usually done by scaling the wall 
at its lower end near the harbor, and of course after 
nightfall. The rendezvous in Annapolis was at a saloon 
kept by one Rosenthal, a German, who for some years 
held a position with respect to the midshipmen similar to 
that held by Benny Havens with regard to the cadets of 
the Military Academy. Rosenthal's saloon was the 

Owls' " club-house, and the most valued possession of 
the " Owls " was an immense bottle, apparently a 
champagne magnum, which they called, for some un- 
known reason, the " sand-fly." This was filled at 

Rosey's " (short for Rosenthal's), and duly brought 
into one of the rooms in Apollo Row. 

The way of the " Owls," like that of transgressors in 
general, was rather hard, and during the liveliest jollifica- 
tions in the town there was always the question of how 
the revellers were to get back again into the school 
grounds without being caught ; for there were not only 
watchmen dispersed around the yard, but a huge black 
Newfoundland dog, which appears to have been quite 
skilful in discovering midshipmen at night. The " fort 
wall," as it was called from its proximity to Fort Severn, 
which they usually scaled, sometimes could not be got 
over in that way on account of the presence of either a 

Early Days of the Naval School 1 79 

watchman or the dog; in which case they would execute 
a flank movement by going around the end of it, which 
was in an unfinished and ragged state, and protruded 
more or less into the bay. At low tide this involved get- 
ting one's feet wet, and at high tide wading and clamber- 
ing over the slippery stones in water nearly to one's 
knees, which, to say the least, was difficult when the 
night — or rather the morning — was pitch-dark. This 
is the performance which is referred to in the second 
stanza of " The Alphabet Song." 

The " mayor" who sold the midshipmen their boots 
was an actual personage. His name was Goodwin, and, 
as a matter of fact, he did make boots and shoes while 
also officiating as mayor of the city. 

The mention of " old Roseygo stuttering Dutch " 
supplies a curious link between the Naval Academy 
and the Military Academy. The Military Academy 
song, " Benny Havens Oh," was then in existence. The 
midshipmen essayed a similar one, using Rosenthal's 
name, which, to make it resemble " Benny Havens Oh," 
they changed to " Roseygo." This seems to have been 
their first recognition of any parallel between themselves 
and the West Point cadets : or indeed of the Military 
Academy at all, except in so far as they knew that it 
had served as an exemplar for the hated "sojer " drills. 

The " sand-fly " was the famous bottle belonging to 
the " Owls " club, to which allusion has already been 

The " twelve " referred to in the fifth stanza were a 
dozen youngsters who were irreverently termed the 
" apostles." The Commandant's house then stood 

i8o The United States Naval Academy 

where the chapel does now, but faced on the street, so 
that his back-yard, in which there was a flower-garden, 
was inside the Academy grounds. The twelve, instead 
of scaling the fort wail, dressed themselves up in white 
sheets, like robes, and provided themselves with white 
masks, and thus attired dehberately walked through the 
Commandant's garden, passed the house, and so into the 
street through his front gate. These were the ones who 
usually got into the rows with the townspeople, for 
which purpose they provided themselves with brickbats, 
etc., which were kept carefully concealed under their 
white robes until necessity called for their use. 

The song, like every other contemporary mention of 
Superintendent Upshur which I have encountered, re- 
cords one of the many impositions on that long-suffer- 
ing ofificer. It was some of the " Owls," probably, who 
became possessed of the wicked desire in the middle of 
a black night to load and fire the evening gun, which of 
course startled everybody in the grounds, and Upshur 
most of all. Next morning all hands were called to 
muster in one of the recitation-rooms, and Upshur made 
them a most plaintive address, in which he pictured his 
unfortunate condition when awakened, beginning with, 
" Sick as I was and raining as it was, I was aroused from 
my bed to," etc., followed by a doleful lecture upon the 
impropriety of their conduct, and winding up with the 
helpless statement, " I cannot govern you, young gentle- 
men; so if you will only govern yourselves I shall be 

Although duelling in the Navy had become measurably 
unfashionable, the '41 date midshipmen revived it at the 

Early Days of the Naval School i8i 

School. One pleasant summer evening, just after supper, 
two of them had the impudence to fight behind the 
mess-room building. The one who fell was borne 
gloriously from the" field of honor" by his comrades 
to the " Gas House." They then called in Surgeon 
Lockwood to explore for a bullet which they told him 
one of the combatants had received " by accident " in 
his hip ; but Lockwood uncovered the fraud by suddenly 
asking,, "What distance?" and getting the answer, 
" Ten paces," from two or three of the sympathizing 
lookers-on before they bethought themselves. 

Another duel came off at Bladensburg, with, strange to 
say, a similar wound; and this time the President dis- 
missed all the participants, although they were reinstated 
some years later. Upshur was not exactly in position to 
object to duels, since he had himself endeavored to resign, 
while a passed midshipman, in order to call out his first 

Dahlgren delivered a few lectures on gunnery, and then 
gave up the work in disgust and begged to be relieved. 
Lockwood, the indefatigable, who was teaching mathe- 
matics and natural philosophy, delivering lectures on 
astronomy, and incidentally arranging the study pro- 
grammes in pretty much everything else, besides being 
the master spirit in the Academic Board, immediately 
leaped into the breach, and, having induced the army 
people to lend him two small field-pieces (they are re- 
ferred to in " The Alphabet Song "), started in to drill the 
midshipmen in light artillery. They resented this 
fiercely. They stole the linchpins and threw them into 
the Severn. They dismounted the guns and hid the 

1 82 The United States Naval Academy 

parts in out-of-the-way places. Lockwood kept right on. 
Then the second and third divisions of the '41 date, 
which had been under instruction in March, '48, insisted 
that he was trying to make them acquire more gunnery 
than the first division had been required to learn, and 
that consequently the first division would have a great 
advantage over them when the entire date was given 
final rank assignment. Lockwood invited them to more 
drill. Thereupon, on St. Patrick's Day, they hanged 
him in effigy from the Academy flagstaff. That aroused 
Upshur, for it was too much even for his kindly 

The ringleaders were sought out and arrested, and 
reported for insulting a superior officer. The Navy De- 
partment ordered a court-martial. The lawyers for the 
defence at once raised the point that the midshipmen 
had not insulted their superior officer, because a pro- 
fessor was neither superior to a midshipman nor, in fact, 
an officer at all, but simply a citizen employed in the 
Navy, — as paymaster's clerks, stewards, etc., were tempo- 
rarily hired. The proceedings were quashed, and new 
charges formulated not involving this anomalous position 
of the Professor, and on these the culprits were con- 
demned and punished. Chauvenet and Lockwood im- 
mediately announced that a school in which the students 
were superior to the professors was an absurdity, and 
thereupon they succeeded in getting Congress to con- 
stitute the professors commissioned officers, with an 
addition of $400 to their yearly pay. The youngsters 
sententiously remarked that for such an increase of pay 
Lockwood could afford to be hanged in effigy every year. 

Early Days of the Naval School 183 

After that they revenged themselves on him by cap- 
turing his horse and painting a white stripe with black 
ports, frigate -fashion, around the animal's body. Then 
they hung a lighted lantern to its head, and turned it 
loose in the Annapolis streets. 

It is difficult, now that the Naval Academy is as tech- 
nical as West Point itself, to realize how much the simple 
evolutions of an infantry squad or of an old-fashioned 
light battery were detested by the midshipmen of the 
past generation. Even the Academic Board, instead of 
ordering peremptorily such a drill, did so in language 
which is almbst apologetic. " It would not occupy more 
than half an hour daily," says the Board, " would be 
healthy exercise, and would tend to the military charac- 
ter of the School." It was enough to insinuate that it 
was military to arouse the ire of the midshipmen. What 
had they to do with " sojers " ? Had not the maxim, 
" A messmate before a shipmate, a shipmate before a 
stranger, a stranger before a dog, but a dog before a 
' sojer, ' " made its way from the forecastle to the steer- 
age long ago ? 

Had not all attempts to drill the blue-jackets in in- 
fantry tactics met with deserved failure ? In 1829, had 
not the perennial question of the utility of the marines 
been dealt with by sixteen of the highest officers in the 
service, of whom seven uncompromisingly insisted that 
soldiers of any sort were of no possible use on board ship ? 
And had not the remaining nine advocated retaining the 
marines only because, in their belief, no system of in- 
struction would ever enable seamen to perform the duties 
particularly appertaining to soldiers, whom they ' ' regard 

1 84 The United States Naval Academy 

with natural aversion," and which they " undertake with 
extreme reluctance," without, at the same time, " im- 
pairing their nautical characteristics " ? They were sailors, 
and none knew better than the older ones the ludicrous 
results of attempting to make a blue-jacket into a soldier. 

Was there not told with infinite glee in every steerage 
the story of the famous naval battalion drill at Norfolk 
in 1837, i" which the Jackies, while under drill by an 
army officer, could not be induced to move " double 
quick " until the first lieutenant of their ship, who was a 
much interested spectator, suddenly shouted, ' ' Stand by 
to board! Board!" and away went the entire crew, 
waving their cutlasses and hurrahing, over fences and 
through the admiring crowd that was watching them, 
with a speed that made " double quick " a turtle's pace 
by contrast ? 

Now it was proposed, said the midshipmen, to " march 
officers of the Navy around like marines, sir, like ma- 
rines," and, as already stated. Professor Lockwood was 
the instigator and the drill-master. The naval officers 
had little knowledge of purely military matters, and the 
civilian professors even less. Lockwood had not only 
the advantage of a West Point education, but what he 
had not learned about the midshipmen and their pecu- 
liarities during his cruise on the United States was prob- 
ably not worth knowing at all. No one better fitted by 
previous training to cope with their perversities could 
possibly have been found. He liked to do it, and he did 
it with an energy which at the age of thirty-one was 
indomitable, and which ultimately yielded only to the 
assault of eighty-six years. 

Early Days of the Naval School 185 

It did not require much time to develop the fact that 
Lockwood's views and not those of the midshipmen 
were going to prevail. Nevertheless, when it was found 
that the drills were to be a permanent institution, " a 
cry," says Lockwood, " went forth beyond the limits of 
the Academy. One would have supposed that I had 
struck a vital blow at the service." Those who remem- 
ber those early drills irreverently liken them to pig- 
driving, for the midshipmen were determined to make 
the task as difficult for Lockwood as they possibly could. 
They would slouch, and stand on one leg, adopt every 
position but that of the soldier, and roll about aimlessly 
in calm disregard of orders. Lockwood, true to his 
West Point training, essayed to make them move briskly 
and sharply. One day, while drilling the midshipmen in 
field-artillery, he started them off in the direction of the 
Severn River. When the head of the column reached 
the steep embankment on the shore Lockwood tried to 
give the command, " Halt!" but, unfortunately, his 
tendency to stutter just at that moment asserted itself. 
"Haw — haw — haw," he shouted, but the word would not 
come. On went the battery over the bank — there was 
no sea-wall then — and into the river went the guns. The 
youngsters who manned the drag-ropes were preparing 
to swim across when the belated order at last arrived. 

The state of discipline which existed at the Naval 
School at that time has now perhaps been sufficiently 
depicted. It cannot, of course, be compared with that 
which prevailed a few years later. The School, in fact, 
was not a military institution at all. There were no- 
formations, no cadet officers, no battalion organization, 

1 86 The United States Naval Academy 

no falling-in for even ordinary muster. The midshipmen 
did not even regularly wear their uniforms. With the ex- 
ception of those who had entered from civil life, they 
were all fresh from the sea. A large part of the '41 date 
did not come in until after they had made two three- 
year cruises. Neither the date of '40 nor the date of '41 
ever came to the School so much with the expectation of 
going through any definite course of study as to be ex- 
amined in the professional and general knowledge which 
they had already acquired from the professors of mathe- 
matics afloat. They regarded the School as simply a place 
where they would be afforded facilities for cramming for 
their coming examinations for promotion, and probably 
for this reason it was impossible for them to understand 
why they should be subjected to military control. Very 
few people in the Navy, at that time, regarded the 
Academy seriously as a permanent school for teaching 
the young officer the rudiments of his profession; and 
probably if the Navy, as a whole, had clearly understood 
that it was intended so to become, or that it was to be 
anything more than one definite place where the mid- 
shipmen could go to prepare themselves for examination 
instead of to several places around the country, it would 
have met with a storm of opposition which might well 
have brought its career to an untimely end. 

The examinations conducted by the visiting commo- 
dores and captains did not differ materially from those 
which the midshipmen of Captain Marryat's days had 
been called upon to confront; for, however much the 
youngsters had progressed in the extent and variety of 
their acquirements by reason of the Naval School's 

Early Days of the Naval School 187 

teaching, the old aristarchs of the service had certainly 
not advanced at all. In seamanship the time-honored 
oral examination was insisted upon. For the rest they 
cared little, and knew less. 

Professor Lockwood says that at the first examination 
held at the School, Professor Girault with great patience 
had prepared one youngster — Nelson — so that he could, 
as Girault supposed, speak something resembling French. 
Nelson, on the other hand, was quite well aware that he 
could do nothing of the kind ; so he laboriously memo- 
rized a collection of stock phrases out of the grammar. 

In due season, with half a dozen commodores as- 
sembled, Girault began the colloquy with : 

" Mr. Nelson, which is your native State ? " 

" Thank you, I am very well," replied Nelson, not 
understanding a word of the query. 

Girault glared at him and tried again. 

" What cruise have you just finished ? " 

I am about twenty-four years old," rejoined Nelson 
with cheerful alacrity, and without the change of a mus- 
cle of his countenance. 

Girault kept this up, doubtless intending, in his own 
time, to overwhelm the offender with confusion — but that 
time never came. For when the conversation reached 
a stopping - place. Commodore Matthew C. Perry with 
ponderous dignity arose and formally congratulated Gi- 
rault on his success in imparting the French language. 

No material change in the organization of the School 
occurred until 1850. The discipline seems to have im- 
proved slightly, not so much because of any tightening 
of restraint, but mainly because the youngsters grew tired 

1 88 The United States Naval Academy 

of making disturbances in so sleepy a place as Annapolis. 
In the fall of 1849 the Academic Board formulated a 
series of recommendations designed to meet all the exist- 
ing difficulties, and these were referred to a committee 
of officers, which included Commodore William B. Shu- 
brick, Commanders Buchanan, Dupont, and Upshur, 
Surgeon Ruschenberger and Professor Chauvenet, to- 
gether with Captain Henry Brewerton, Corps of En- 
gineers U.S.A., who at that time was Superintendent 
of the United States Military Academy, and who was 
specially charged with matters of discipline. 

The result was a new code of regulations, which went 
into effect on July i, 1850, and by virtue of which the 
name of the institution was changed from the Naval 
School to the United States Naval Academy. 

From the author's " Shakings," 1867. 


Wherein we Trace the Progress of the Young Academy and of the 
Oldsters and the Youngsters there Assembled until the 
Former Come no more : and so the Old Midshipman Begins 
to Bid us. Farewell 

THE student upon entering was now appointed an 
acting midshipman " attached to the Academy 
for instruction " for a period of two years. At 
the expiration of this term, provided he had satisfactorily 
passed the required examinations, he was ordered to sea, 
and then after six months' service afloat, if his conduct 
should be approved by his captain, he was to receive his 
warrant as a midshipman. After two years and six 
months longer at sea he was to return to the Academy 
for a final two-year period. This plan, therefore, in- 
volved the establishment of a four-year course of study, 
two years of which were taken upon entrance, and the 
remaining two years after an interval of three years' sea 
service. Thus, although four classes of students were 
provided for, there was an intermission of three years be- 
tween the end of the third-class and the beginning of the 
second-class course. The Academy was placed under 
the supervision of the Chief of the Bureau of Ordnance 
and Hydrography, the Superintendent of the institution 


I go The United States Naval Academy 

being, however, in immediate charge. The title of 
" Commandant of Midshipmen " was given to his execu- 
tive assistant. Six departments of instruction were 
created : (i) naval tactics and practical seamanship, (2) 
mathematics, (3) natural and experimental philosophy, 

(4) gunnery and infantry tactics, ethics and English, and 

(5) modern languages; the several professors, with the 
Superintendent and Commandant of Midshipmen, consti- 
tuting the Academic Board. 

A determined effort now seems to have been made to 
bring the youngsters under a stricter and ;nore military 
discipline; and the results of Captain Henry Brewerton's 
West Point experience showed themselves in the new 
curbs and restrictions. 

Demerits, instead of being merely a negative quantity 
to be added algebraically to merit marks, now assumed a 
different function and were made indicative of a student's 
general conduct. They were imposed for all breaches of 
regulations, and were given a weight and importance 
equal to mathematics in determining final standing. 
Two hundred of them accumulated in a year to the dis- 
credit of an offender involved his dismissal. 

The nocturnal revels of the " Owls " in staid Annapolis 
and the attendance of the less rollicking youngsters upon 
the social functions of the hospitable citizens were pro- 
hibited with equal impartiality. In fact, everybody was 
" quarantined " to the yard; not even the oilRcers or pro- 
fessors being allowed to go outside of the enclosure with- 
out permission of the Superintendent. 

The new Regulations sternly proscribed duelling, the 
possession of firearms or cards, and clubs or gatherings of 

The Naval Academy Begins 191 

any kind. They also tackled a new difficulty which had 
arisen during the four years in Annapolis, as it would 
have grown up in similar circumstances anywhere on the 
face of the earth. At the instance of an old commodore, 
an investigation was made into the affaires du cceur of 
the midshipmen, which revealed a state of affairs hardly 
consistent with proper discipline. 

True, British midshipmen had been in the habit of 
marrying since time immemorial, and not very long be- 
fore a member of Parliament, inveighing against the 
delays in their promotion, had triumphantly shown that 
one of them was a grandfather. But this was the time 
to nip the practice in the bud in our Navy, and the 
edict went forth that if any student should marry 
while attached to the Academy, or " be found to be 
married," he should be dismissed, a rule which is still in 

The other prohibitions were minute in their detail. 
The unauthorized contracting of debts was forbidden, 
whether the Annapolis tradesmen were willing or not. 
" All combinations under any pretext whatever" were 
to stop; and that Settled the " Owls " and Societies for 
Mutual Improvement in Professional Attainments at 
one fell stroke. Cooking in rooms was proscribed, in 
the hope of making " reformed banquets " things of the 
past, and this was reinforced by a barring out of all the 
necessary raw materials for these festivities in the form 
of " spirituous, vinous, fermented, or other intoxicat- 
ing drinks," and of tobacco "in any shape " ; and finally 
a variety of new punishments in addition to demerits 
were invented, ranging from confinement to the grounds, 

192 The United States Naval Academy 

through reprimands public and private, suspension from 
duty, and confinement in the guard-room, to dismissal. 

At last the Academy was given a practice ship, and 
it apparently has West Point indirectly to thank for it ; 
for the vessel seems to have been bestowed not so much 
because she was urgently needed, as because a practice 
cruise in the summer months would correspond to the 
annual encampment of the Military Academy, and thus 
the much-desired similarity between the two institutions 
would be augmented, possibly to the benefit of the dis- 
cipline of the younger one. So the Preble — a third-class 
sloop-of-war — was assigned to the Academy; but the 
midshipmen did not get her until late in the summer of 
1 85 1, and after they had made a preliminary cruise about 
Chesapeake Bay in the John Hancock, a small steamer. 

The provision for the practice cruise resulted in a radi- 
cal innovation. From the outset the theory had been 
that the youngster must be sent to sea at an early age in 
order that his naval tastes and habits might be formed 
while he was impressionable, and they were, — to his 
detriment, — as we have seen. So long as no other way 
of getting him afloat existed other than in a regular ser- 
vice ship, the convictions of the old officers, which 
amounted to positive faith, were potent enough to cause 
the break of three years in the middle of his academic 
course in order to meet the need. Now, however, it was 
seen that short annual practice cruises would supply the 
sea experience, and in a far more effective manner, since 
they could be arranged wholly for the instruction of the 
midshipmen, to which, of course, no cruising ship could 
be solely devoted. 

Captain. Midshipman. 


The Naval Academy Begins 193 

In July, 1851, the Academic Board strongly recom- 
mended to the Secretary of the Navy that the four years 
of study at the Academy be made consecutive, and upon 
the approval of the Examining Board, which met in the 
following October, Secretary Graham, on November 15, 
1851, directed the change. 

The academic course thus became four consecutive 
years, leading to a certificate of graduation which entitled 
the holder to a midshipman's warrant. Then, also, it 
was provided that no one could have a warrant who was 
not a graduate of the Naval Academy. 

The regular classes in the institution then began. The 
acting midshipmen who entered in 1851 became at once 
the first class, and they remained first-class men during 
the entire four years of their stay. It was not until 1855 
that there was a fourth class. The distinction between 
the "oldsters," or regularly warranted midshipmen, who 
returned to the Academy for a year or less, and the new 
" acting midshipmen on probation," as they were called, 
became now more marked than ever. The oldsters 
formed a class entirely by themselves, wore long swal- 
low-tailed coats and whiskers, and were quartered to- 
gether and messed together. There was little or no 
-intercourse between them and the youngsters. The 
oldster invariably forgot, or never knew or cared to 
know, the name of a youngster, and when he conde- 
scended to address him he called 'him " youngster." In 
fact, there was about the same distinction made between 
the oldsters and the youngsters as there was between 
ward-room and steerage officers on board ship. 

But there was no hazing. That practice has never 

194 The United States Naval Academy- 
been traditional in the Naval Academy, nor can it be said 
to have existed even casually until within recent years. 
The oldsters would have regarded any tormenting of the 
youngsters as beneath their dignity. Instead of hazing, 
a custom grew up of the older students' selecting younger 
ones for special aid and assistance. This continued cer- 
tainly up to the late " sixties " ; and nothing created in 
a newly made third-class man a feeling of greater pride 
than the fact that he had singled out some neophyte of 
the entering class, whom he designated as " my plebe " 
and defended against all comers. 

The senior cadet officer, or adjutant, was always taken 
from the oldsters, and the first one appointed appears to 
have been Midshipman Edwin O. Carnes, who resigned 
as a passed midshipman, and became a prominent lawyer 
in New York. Midshipman Edward Brodhead, of the 
date of 1847, also seems to have acted as adjutant dur- 
ing part of the year 1851-52. The adjutant was not 
the presiding officer at formations, as he subsequently 
became, and as is the cadet lieutenant-commander of the 
present day, but was rather an adjutant in the strict 
military sense of the term, as is the cadet officer now 
holding that position at the Naval Academy. The officer 
in charge of the battalion at formations of every kind was 
Professor Lockwood, who acted as colonel. 

Six members of the class of the date of 1851 were 
advanced and permitted to complete the course in three 
years. They were, in the order of seniority, Thomas O. 
Selfridge, Jr., now a rear-admiral retired ; John Cain, Jr., 
deceased ; Joseph N. Miller, rear-admiral retired ; James 
M. Todd, deceased; John S. Barnes, now an eminent 

Passed Midshipman. Midshipman. 


The Naval Academy Begins 195 

banker in New York; and John M. Stribling, deceased. 
They were advanced for special ability, and although it 
was necessary to give the senior cadet rank to an oldster, 
Acting Midshipman Todd was placed pretty nearly on 
the same level by being created sub-adjutant, and that 
office persisted until 1865. Self ridge, Barnes, and Strib- 
ling were made captains of gun crews, while Cain and 
Miller were made" chiefs of sections," each section con- 
sisting of two guns' crews, an office apparently invented 
for their benefit, and which does not appear ever to have 
been bestowed on any one else. The class of 1851-54 is, 
therefore, one of the most interesting that ever entered 
the Naval Academy, and the steady upward advance of 
its senior member, Selfridge, showed the gradual absorp- 
tion of the personnel of the line of the Navy by those 
who were graduates of the Naval Academy in the strict 
sense of the term; that is, those who had begun their 
regular course after the institution had been changed 
from a school to an academy. 

It required the span of Selfridge' s active career, forty- 
seven years, to bring this about. The Mexican War was 
fought by naval officers educated wholly under the old 
system, and the only representatives of the Naval School 
in active service were a few young midshipmen, like 
Simpson and others, who had been in attendance at An- 
napolis for a few months. The naval officers in respon- 
sible command during the Civil War were all of them of 
the old Navy. Not only the youngsters of the Naval 
Academy but all the oldsters were lieutenants when the 
war began, and none of them reached the grade of com- 
mander before it closed. The Spanish War was fought 

196 The United States Naval Academy 

wholly by graduates of the Naval Academy who had 
gone through the regular course, and by the few surviv- 
ors of those officers who had entered the regular Navy 
from the volunteer service at the close of the Civil 

The first graduating exercises held at the Academy 
were those of the class of 1854, and consisted simply in 
the muster of all hands in the chapel at noon, the reading 
of prayers by the chaplain, a brief address by the Super- 
intendent, and the presentation of the certificates of 

The first Superintendent under the new organization 
was Commander C. K. Stribling, who relieved Comman- 
der Upshur; and the first commandant of midshipmen 
was Lieutenant Thomas Tingey Craven, who relieved 
Lieutenant Sidney J. Lee. 

The full Academic staff was now William Chauvenet, 
Professor of Mathematics ; William F. Hopkins, Profes- 
sor of Natural and Experimental Philosophy ; Henry H. 
Lockwood, Professor of Gunnery and Infantry Tactics; 
Joseph E. Nourse, Professor of Ethics; and Ars^ne N. 
Girault, Professor of Modern Languages. Acting Master 
Samuel Marcy and Passed Midshipmen WiUiam P. Buck- 
ner and James Armstrong were assistants in mathematics. 
Passed Midshipman Samuel P. Carter in infantry tactics, 
Passed Midshipman Alexander M. Debree in philosophy, 
Messrs. Alfred H. Barber in ethics, Edward Seager in 
drawing and fencing, William M. Chauvenet in French, 
and Edward A. Roget in Spanish. In July, 1850, the 
marking scale of 4, and in the following May a system of 
maximum numbers and common differences in which 

The Naval Academy Begins 197 

mathematics counted 3, English studies 2, French 2, 
gunnery 2, and drawing i, were adopted. 

The passed midshipmen then attached to the Academic 
staff acted both as assistant, professors and as poHce 
officers. They were the first " officers in charge," and 
they succeeded the Professor of Infantry Tactics in pre- 
siding at the mess-table. The only organization which 
the students had was one of guns' crews, each consisting 
of a captain and fifteen men, with an adjutant and sub- 
adjutant as stated. 

It was difficult enough, as we have seen, to maintain 
any discipline in the beginning among the youngsters 
who had made only ordinary cruises, and who perhaps 
might not be inaptly compared to a flock of Mother 
Carey's chickens shut up in a hen-coop. But now the 
midshipmen who had seen actual service in Mexico began 
to return ; and these were rather like young eagles who, 
having hunted for themselves, were again to be thrust 
back into the nest. If the troubles of the long-suflering 
authorities were serious before, they were doubly so now. 

The conditions were very different from those which 
had prevailed only a few years earlier before the re-organ- 
ization of the school into the Naval Academy had taken 
place. The students were not now sent there merely to 
be crammed in order to pass examinations, but were 
required to pursue a definite scholastic course. The 
regulations were not arbitrarily established to suit ex- 
pedients, but were fixed and definite. In brief, the 
school was no longer adapting itself to its students, but 
requiring its students to adapt themselves to it. The 
bonds of discipline were in all respects more tightly 

198 The United States Naval Academy 

drawn, and as a consequence there was more chafing 
than ever against them and more perverse ingenuity 
developed in devising infractions. 

The authorities of the Academy were apparently kept 
steadily on the defensive. The methods of tormenting 
them which the midshipmen invented were original, and, 
as usual, ludicrous. They devised the art of extinguish- 
ing all the gas in a building during study hours by 
vigorously blowing into a burner. They put bricks in 
the morning gun, and sometimes in the guns of the 
light battery, and the boats in the harbor fled in terror 
from in front of the sea-wall. They set pails of water 
on top of the doors of their rooms so that when the 
oiificer in charge essayed to enter, the pails would upset 
and duck him. They contrived the "door salute, ' ' which 
was always accorded to any officer in charge who might 
attempt to catch them in their misdeeds by wearing rub- 
ber shoes to make his footfalls silent, and which consisted 
in banging the doors not in his immediate view in tegular 
order after the manner of a gun salute afloat. 

A genuine salute was never fired at the Academy 
without much misgiving on the part of the authorities 
as to what would happen. Latent brickbats in the guns 
were always suspected. One day a French frigate came 
into the bay, and the oldsters were sent to prepare the 
guns of Fort Severn to salute her. The openings in the 
superstructure of the fort were then closed in with 
numerous glazed sashes. These they carefully removed 
and piled them up on the barbette outside and directly 
under the gun muzzles, where the sashes remained un- 
noticed. When the first gun was fired there was a fearful 

The Naval Academy Begins 199 

crashing of glass. The salute, of course, could not be 
interrupted ; as a consequence the perpetrators had the 
inexpressible delight of seeing the authorities deliberately 
blow all their own sashes to bits, — " one hundred and 
thirty-six in all," as a rear-admiral who had a hand in 
the transaction in later years confessed. 

There is still a regulation in force requiring that the 
bedspreads in the cadets' rooms shall be tucked under the 
mattresses, so that a clear view of the floor beneath can be 
had. That started in a delusion, duly prepared, for a 
certain officer in charge. He suddenly pounced into a 
room and beheld two feet sticking out from under a bed. 

" Ah — ha — visiting in study hours! Come out," he 
sternly ordered. The feet remained motionless ; then he 
grabbed them and found that they were only artistically 
disposed boots. 

Next day it was impossible to tell who was visiting and 
who not. From beneath all the beds ostensible feet pro- 
truded when inspection was made, and the officer in 
charge dared not risk an examination. Therefore the 
regulation about tucking up the spread was devised and 
supplemented by an order requiring all boots to be ex- 
hibited in plain sight in front of the mantelpiece. 

Even musical instruments were frowned upon after a 
mysterious hand-organ took to pervading the quarters 
with unearthly melody in the middle of the night. The 
owner was finally caught and ordered to deliver it up, 
which he did by dropping it on the brick pavement from 
the upper porch of one of the buildings. There is a 
tradition that small pieces of that instrument could be 
dug out from between the bricks for years afterwards. 

200 The United States Naval Academy 

The youngsters who came fresh from home were, as 
already stated, intimately mixed with the oldsters from 
the cruising ships, and as long as the oldsters constituted 
a considerable percentage of the total number of students 
the discipline suffered. 

In August, 1849, there were forty-two members of the 
'41 date present. Their general conduct report shows 
twenty-three inattentive and doubtful against nineteen at- 
tentive. They seem to have appeared at recitations and 
drills about as they liked. Some individuals bolted one 
third of the recitations and attended on an average only 
three battery drills out of five. 

The midshipmen originally ordered to the institution 
prior to 1850, as has been already stated, dressed in citi- 
zens' clothes while in attendance. The Regulations of 
the school issued in 1847 prescribed that a blue cloth 
jacket, vest, and pantaloons should be worn, but men- 
tioned no distinctive marks or insignia. In 1850, however, 
a special uniform was devised for the acting midshipmen. 
The fully warranted midshipmen or oldsters already 
had a uniform which they were now required to wear. 
Part of the-students appeared in the dress of the grade 
and part in that of the acting grade. The acting mid- 
shipmen were attired (while attached to the Academy) in 
a jacket and cap similar to that prescribed for midship- 
men, in which, however, the buttons on the cuffs and 
pocket of the jacket and the gold-lace band on the cap 
were omitted. As a substitute for the band the adorn- 
ment was an anchor similar to that on the collar of the 
jacket. This uniform prevailed with some slight modifi- 
cations until 1855. Then it was specifically ordered that 







The Naval Academy Begins 201 

the jacket should be double-breasted with a rolling 
collar bearing a gold foul anchor on each side. The cap 
had a silver foul anchor over the front. 

The dress was distinctively nautical. The jacket was 
generally worn unbuttoned and the cap flattened down 
on the top and rolled over to one side. The necktie was 
ordinarily a loose flowing handkerchief. The collar 
anchors were usually made of metal and gilded. This 
uniform continued without substantial alteration, except 
in the matter of the cap ornament, until 1865. 

A working dress was also provided, the chief feat- 
ure of which was the unshapely so-called " jumper," 
or blue shirt, which hung loosely about the form. The 
opening in front was short, just big enough to get the 
head through, and closed by gilt buttons and decorated 
with light blue braid, which was put on with a number 
of turns to indicate the class of the wearer; thus, a mem- 
ber of the first class had three turns, of the second class 
two, of the third class one, and of the fourth class none. 

During the incumbency of Superintendent Stribling the 
old chapel, the observatory, and the recitation-hall were 
built. The construction of all of them was miserable. 
Rear-Admiral Matthews tells the story that one night, 
while he and some of his comrades were studying in their 
rooms, they suddenly heard a rumbling sound, the lights 
were extinguished, and there was a crash and a rush of 
cold air. One wall of the building had fallen out, leaving 
the rooms on the side toward the water exposed. Fortu- 
nately, the floor beams did not rest on this wall, else the 
Admiral would not have been left to tell the story. As 
it was, he found himself sitting on a shelf in the open air. 

202 The United States Naval Academy 

Recently another old Academy building was found to be 
split in two from top to bottom. 

In the summer of 1852 the sloop-of-war Preble, which 
had been used as a practice ship during the latter part of 
the preceding summer, made the first foreign practice 
cruise, proceeding to the West Indies and Madeira under 
the command of Lieutenant Thomas T. Craven. In 1853 
the Preble again went abroad, this time extending the 
voyage to the northern coast of Spain. After that the 
Preble made cruises every summer until 1856, when 
the Plymouth, a larger and better vessel of the same gen- 
eral type, was substituted for that year only. Two more 
cruises, those of 1857 and 1858, were then made by the 
Preble, and she was finally displaced by the Plymouth in 

On these early practice ships the life of the young mid- 
shipmen involved much hardship. They were, of course, 
stationed as blue-jackets, and required to do the whole 
work of the vessel, and they were not exempted even 
from menial labor such as the cadets nowadays never do. 
The ships were not fitted in any wise for their accommo- 
dation. Their food was the Navy ration and of so poor 
a quality that they were literally half-starved. They 
were given practically no spending money. Some, on 
their arrival in European ports, sold their clothes and 
their sextants to get funds in order to buy food. Even 
when they were taken ashore officially to look at the 
foreign naval arsenals, they would escape whenever they 
could and endeavor to purchase provisions. 

Once, on the return of the Plymouth to Annapolis, 
they obtained brief shore liberty to visit the town, and 

The Naval Academy Begins 203 

they started as usual for the grocery stores. Colonel 
Thomas Swann met them at the gate of the Naval Acad- 
emy, and with characteristic large-heartedness took them 
to his house and fed them. Because this delayed their 
return beycftid the specified time, the martinet who com- 
manded their ship put them under arrest. This was the 
first appearance of Colonel Thomas Swann as purveyor 
to the n^idshipmen. He began the work out of the kind- 
ness of his heart in this amateur way and then took it up 
as a life pursuit, and for nearly a quarter of a century and 
until his death he presided over the mess-hall as the 
commissary of the establishment. 

Commander Stribling was succeeded as Superintendent 
by Commander Louis M. Goldsborough in November, 
1853. Commander Goldsborough was a typical seaman 
of the old school; imposing in person, loud in voice, 
genial in temperament, and very much inclined to let 
the youngsters have their own way up to a certain limit, 
which, however, was fixed only in his own mind. For 
the more sedate members of the Academic Board to 
come to him with complaints of the midshipmen's mis- 
behavior, so long as he knew it was of the sort which 
always had been peculiar to midshipmen since they first 
began, rather nettled him, and he enjoyed giving the 
professor a reply savoring strongly of the brine, and 
which carried no satisfaction whatever. But let his 
limits be transgressed, and there was an uproar. Burn- 
ing an outhouse was such a transgression, and then he 
arose in mighty wrath. 

His speech on that occasion is a navy classic, and is 
also remarkable because it appears automatically to have 

204 The United States Naval Academy 

fallen into rhythm. He was so exasperated that he re- 
fused to have any regular formation of the battalion; 
but, addressing the first crowd he encountered, he 
shouted out the following dithyrambic remarks : 


" ' Young gentlemen, assemble! 

It makes no matter where; 
I only wish to speak to you, 

So hear me where you are. 
Some vile incendiary 

Last night, while sneaking 'round. 
Set fire to our outhouse 

And burned it to the ground. 
'T is well then, to tell them 

Who did this grievous ill 
I '11 hang them ! yes, I '11 hang them, — 

So help me 1 will! ' " 

During Commander Goldsborough's administration the 
studies became much more advanced in character and in 
detail. They were divided among nine departments. 
The first covered the field of practical seamanship, prac- 
tical naval gunnery, and naval tactics. The second 
(mathematics) included descriptive and analytical geom- 
etry with the differential and integral calculus, if time 
could be afforded. The third included astronomy, 
navigation, and surveying ; the fourth, natural and 
experimental philosophy, chemistry, and a brief course 
on the steam-engine; the fifth, the theory of gunnery, 
field artillery, infantry tactics, and the art of defence; 
the sixth, grammar, geography, history, rhetoric, ethics, 
and political science ; the seventh, French ; the eighth, 
Spanish; and the ninth, right-line drawing, sketching, 
and perspective. 


The Naval Academy Begins 205 

The inclusion of such subjects as political science and 
ethics may well arouse question. But " political science" 
merely meant a slight modicum of international law 
taught through the medium of the first volume of Kent's 
Commentaries. What the subject of " ethics " was ever 
intended to comprise is obscure. As a matter of fact, 
the midshipmen were required to study for nearly twenty 
years a volume entitled Wayland's Moral Science. It 
may be doubted whether any of them fully appreci- 
ated the information contained in that learned treatise, 
for they generally reviled the excellent Mr. Wayland 
as a " prig " ; and even " buried " the book with much 
ceremony (the first college custom which they imitated) 
when their course in it was ended. 

In the Naval Academy of to-day there is hardly any 
offence, hazing excepted, for which a cadet may be more 
severely punished (not only by the authorities, but by 
his own classmates) than for what, in Academy slang, is 
called " gouging"; or, in other words, using unlawful 
or improper aids in the recitation-room, such, for ex- 
ample, as copying from leaves of text-books torn out 
and concealed about the person. Wayland's Moral Sci- 
ence had probably much to do with the inception of this 
practice. For years, it was regarded by the midship- 
men as perfectly legitimate to ' ' gouge Moral Science. ' ' 
Pretty much everybody did it, and this despite the ludi- 
crous contradiction between the teachings of the book 
and the practice itself. 

There appear to have been but few amusements for the 
midshipmen at the Academy in the days under review. 
Athletics, in the modern acceptation of the term, were 

2o6 The United States Naval Academy 

practically unknown. There had been a bowling-alley, 
located between the recitation building and the river. 
But that was burned, and apparently not replaced. 
Occasionally there was a dance held in a room called 
the Lyceum, which occupied half the floor above the 
mess-hall. The gatherings " behind the Battery," how- 
ever, seem to have continued, and there the oldsters 
spun their yarns and the youngsters rapturously listened 
and smoked their " contrabands " in blissful disregard of 
the regulations. At these gatherings the ballad which 
appears to have been the most popular (there are half a 
dozen versions of it, and every oldster who nowadays 
recalls it avers that his memory contains the only correct 
one) was the ' ' Flash Frigate ' ' ; and as will appear by its 
perusal, it is a protest against the miseries of the old 
smart ship. The best form of it runs as follows — exple- 
tives and all — and "sings," I am assured, " much better 
than it reads ' ' : 

It 's of a flash frigate, a frigate of fame, 

All o'er the East Indies she bore a great name, 

For work and for usage of every degree 

Like slaves in a galley, we ploughed the wide sea. 

So early in the morning, our work does begin, 
From her waist to her bulwarks the buckets do ring. 
Fore- and maintopmen so loudly do call 
For sand and for holystones, both great and small. 

The decks are swabbed up, the ropes are coiled down, 
Then it 's ' Up with your hammocks,' boys, every one, 
With seven round turns both equal and true, 
And all of one size, the hoops they go through. 

The Naval Academy Begins 207 

" Now, ray brave boys, comes the call to make sail, 
We can double reef topsails and that without fail. 
From royal to skysail or moonsail so high, 
At the sound of the whistle, star-gazers must fly. 

" It 's ' All hands 'bout ship! Reef topsails in one! ' 
And quick to the rigging, your place must be won, 
Then settle away topsails, as the helium goes down, 
And ' Lay aloft topmen! ' as the main-yards swing round. 

" ' Trice up! lay out! take two reefs in one! ' 
'T is the work of a moment and all must be done, 
Man well the head braces, topsail halliards and all. 
Settle away the foretopsail as you let go and haul. 

" Now there 's our first Luff, you might know him well, 
All around the lee gangway he cuts a great swell, 
All around the lee gangway he has a broad share. 
And at that very moment it 's ' D n your eyes there!' 

" Now all you bold sailors who plough the salt sea. 
Beware of this frigate, wherever she be; 
They '11 beat you and bang you till not worth a d n. 

And then send you home to your own native land." 

The midshipmen have never shown any especial poetic 
genius, although one of them. Midshipman William 
Leggett, did, in 1827, publish a thin volume of verses of 
an amatory character. Wis grande passion, however, was 
so lachrymose, and hence so radically different from that 
which thie average midshipman experiences, as to suggest 
great and unusual troubles with his first lieutenant, fol- 
lowed bjr'iong periods of gloomy meditation at the 

The subjoined poem, quite popular at the period under 
review, is easily the best which has emanated from the- 

2o8 The United States Naval Academy 

steerage. It is entitled " The Reefer's Farewell to 
Home," and was written many years earlier by Mid- 
shipman Richard W. Meade, Sr. : 

" Wait, ye winds, while I repeat 
A parting signal to the fleet 

Whose station is at home. 
Then waft the reefer's simple prayer, 
And let it oft be whispered there, 

While distant seas I roam. 

" Farewell to father — ' time-worn hulk ' 
Who, spite of metal, spite of bulk, 

Must soon his cable slip ; 
Yet ere he 's broken up, I '11 try 
The flag of gratitude to fly. 

In duty to the ship. 

' ' Farewell to mother — faithful wife 
Who launched me on the sea of life. 

And rigged me fore and aft; 
May Providence her timber spare. 
And keep her hull in good repair 

To tow the smaller craft. 

" Farewell to sister — lovely yacht — 
Though whether she '11 be manned or not 

I cannot now foresee; 
Yet may some craft a tender prove, 
Well found in stores of truth and love, 

To take her under lee. 

" Farewell to Jack, the jolly boat, 
And all our little craft afloat, 

In home's delightful bay. 
When they arrive at ' sailing age ' 
May wisdom get the weather gauge 

And guide them on their way. 

The Naval Academy Begins 209 

" Farewell to all ; on life's rude main 
Perchance we ne'er shall meet again, 

Thro' stress of stormy weather, 
Yet when He summons us above, 
We '11 harbor in the port of love, 

And all be moored together. ' ' 

The last of the oldsters to attend the Academy be- 
longed to the date of 1850. They arrived at irregular 
times, as their cruises ended, and when the final remnant 
of them departed, the Academy was without students 
other than those who had come to it directly from civil 
life. The status of the old midshipmen with respect to 
the younger ones had, however, some time before then 
undergone a gradual and salutary change. They had 
ceased to be privileged characters; they were subjected 
to the same routine in all its details as their juniors, with 
whom they often shared their rooms. They constituted 
in fact nothing more than a supernumerary senior class, 
subject to, if anything, a stricter discipline than those 
below them, for whom they were ultimately made ±0 fill 
the rdle of exemplars. 

This was the ofificial ending of the midshipman of the 
old Navy, for although he did not completely disappear 
until the reorganization of the service in 1862, there was 
no further creation of him after the last oldsters left the 
Naval Academy in 1856. 


Wherein we Continue to Observe the Progress of the Naval Acad- 
emy, Incidentally Considering the Merit Roll of Midshipman 
George Dewey, and also Noting the Inception of a Perennial 
Well-Spring of Nautical Knowledge 

THE military organization of the Academy was now 
very simple. The immediate command was 
vested in the Superintendent, who seems to 
have done much more of the executive work than he 
now performs. The Commandant of Midshipmen, who 
did the rest of it, was also the instructor in practical 
seamanship, naval gunnery, and naval tactics. His per- 
sonal powers were, however, limited, and all applications 
for privileges, etc., were made to the Superintendent. 
He was specifically charged with the inspection of the 
grounds and buildings and the repair of injured articles, 
and he was also placed in command of the practice ship 
during the summer cruise; but, further than this, no 
duties, other than those pertaining to instruction in the 
branches above named, were assigned to him. His 
senior assistant also inspected the quarters daily, or more 
frequently if necessary, to preserve order. 

The battalion formations were alike for all purposes, 
or, in other words, no matter what was to be done, the 


The Academy before the Civil War 2 1 1 

students generally fell in as mess crews, and then changed 
into companies for infantry drill, or guns' crews for great- 
gun or light-battery exercise, and so on. The only cadet 
officers were the adjutant, the assistant adjutant, the 
captains, and the second captains; the first two being 
distinguished by three rows of gold cord on the sleeves 
of their uniform jackets, the captains by two rows, and 
the second captains by one row. 

Appointments to cadet officer's rank were purely arbi- 
trary, scholastic standing sometimes being considered, 
sometimes not. 

The first captains of the crews were members of the 
first class. The second captains could be taken from 
either the first or second class. The members of each 
mess crew were selected as nearly as possible from the 
same class. 

Up to the time of the departure of the oldsters in 1856 
their residence was the building now known as No. 5, 
which was termed the midshipmen's building. The 
acting midshipmen were distributed so that the. fourth 
class lived in the buildings nearest to the recitation-hall. 

Toward the end of Commander Goldsborough's term 
the discipline of the institution materially improved. In 
fact, the youngsters themselves began to manifest a desire 
to assist in the improvement ; but they went about it after 
their own fashion, and it is said that the earliest of their 
essays in self-government was to demand the dismissal 
of one of their number for conduct of which they did not 
approve. As the authorities were evidently not yet pre- 
pared to permit them to have a voice in the management 
of the institution, their request was denied. Thereupon 

212 The United States Naval Academy 

they took the offender behind the " Gas House " and 
tarred and feathered him. This resulted in six of them 
being dismissed ; but they immediately went to Wash- 
ington in a body and invoked the aid of their Congress- 
men and political friends, enjoyed a good time, and 
returned to the Academy reinstated, with no worse 
punishment in store for them than an order to go on the 
practice cruise and not to leave their ships in port, except 
in charge of an officer. 

The drills continued under Lockwood, who had be- 
come wise by long experience. The story already told 
of the battalion which jumped into the Severn before he 
managed to enunciate the order " Halt" was well 
known; and one day history seemed about to repeat 
itself. The infantry companies were heading for the sea- 
wall, the order " Halt " was not given; and as the brink 
was reached every youngster with great glee prepared to 
go overboard. But just at the critical moment they con- 
cluded it was best not to do so, and the battalion halted 
of its own motion. " Why — why — d-don't you do it ? " 
demanded Lockwood, grimly chuckling at getting the 
better of the boys. 

His triumph, however, was not long lived. In light- 
artillery drill, he generally had a bugler to sound the 
orders, but it so happened once that the bugler being ill, 
the Professor had to fall back upon his voice. The 
battalion, dragging its 6-pounder brass Napoleons, was 
advancing and firing by half-batteries, this time in the 
direction of the board fence in rear of the Superinten- 
dent's house. Again, at the last moment, Lockwood's 
speech halted. Forward went the last half-battery and 

The Academy before the Civil War 213 

took its position with the muzzles of the guns nearly 
touching the barrier. In vain and wildly the Professor 
gesticulated. Bang! went the guns, and the Superin- 
tendent's fence was blown into kindling-wood. 

Nothing appears to have been done by way of punish- 
ment. Goldsborough is said rather to have covertly 
enjoyed such performances. Even when the youngsters 
captured an assistant professor who had fallen from 
grace with them for some reason (they had already 
named him the " Bull Pup"), and left him locked up 
in a glass case, vainly shouting for release, the offenders 
managed to escape any retribution. 

If more amusements had been allowed to the midship- 
men, or, better, if they had been encouraged to embark 
in athletic sports and exercises, these absurdities and in- 
fractions of discipline would not have been as typically 
illustrative of the Academy life of forty odd years ago as 
they in fact are. But athletics, as I have said, were 
practically unknown. There was no adequate gymnastic 
apparatus, and as time went on the only amusements 
within the walls were the " stag hops " on Saturdays, 
held in the basement of the old recitation-hall. There 
were also sailing excursions around the bay in ship's 
boats, of which there were plenty. The youngsters 
would get together " behind the Battery " and sing, as of 
old ; but, as usual, there was little originality in their 
poetic muse, and I have found but two productions of 
the period which have survived. Both were sung to the 
air of " The Wearing of the Green." One is rather 
cheerful in anticipation of the long leave of absence, 
which then, as for many years afterwards, was granted 

214 The United States Naval Academy 

during the whole of the second summer of the course, 
and runs as follows : 

" Come all ye gallant middies 
Who are going on furlough, 
We '11 sing the song of liberty, 
We 're going for to go. 

" Take your tobacco lively 
And pass the grog around, 
We '11 have a jolly time to-night 
Before we 're homeward bound. 

" Our sweethearts waiting for us. 
With eyes brimful of tears, 
Will welcome us back home again 
From an absence of two years." 

The other was less joyous, and was chanted by those 
who expected soon to depart permanently. They used 
to gather always in Room 24 of Building 2, and hence 
the refrain of that doleful ditty was 

" At number 24, at number 24, 

'T is there we sing our bilgeing song, 
At number 24." 

There is an entry in the records of the Academic Board 
of this period which has become of historical interest. 
It bears the date September 23, 1854, and reads: 

" George S. Storrs of Ala., 14 years; George Dewey of Ver- 
mont, 15 years, 11 months; A. P. de Shields of Louisiana, 15 
years, 11 months (and three others) were reported duly quali- 
fied. Adjourned, J. E. Nourse, Secretary." 

And that was the advent into the Navy of its present 

The Academy before the Civil War 215 

Of the candidates who were examined in the fall of 
1854, seventy-five were admitted; probably, as the aver- 
age then ran, about sixty per cent, of all who presented 
themselves. Midshipman Dewey's subsequent progress 
was not without its vicissitudes, for, as the result of his 
first examination, in June, 1855, his naval career nearly 
came to an abrupt termination. It is interesting to re- 
view his scholastic experience here, not merely because 
of the great eminence which he has achieved, but because 
it illustrates typically the influence of proficiency in some 
studies rather than others upon the final merit roll of a 
student. Upon the standing of the graduate depended 
then as now his relative position in the list of ofificers of 
the Navy ; a position which, under the seniority system 
prevailing, never changes except through accidental 
circumstances during his entire career. 

At his first examination Midshipman Dewey passed 
" out of his class " in conduct (49), and geography and 
history (39), and just within it in grammar (33), and 
drawing (35). His best place was in mathematics, where 
he stood No. 25. The outcome of that examination was 
that of the thirty-eight midshipmen who successfully 
passed it, Dewey was in place the 35th. This made him 
safe by three numbers, and he owed it chiefly to his 
standing in mathematics and to the peculiar system of 
making up the merit roll then prevailing, which it may 
be well now to explain in some detail. 

The midshipmen were marked, as they are at the pres- 
ent time, for every recitation on a scale of 4 ; the grada- 
tions from a total failure, for which the student received 
a o as his mark, to a perfect recital entitling him to a 4, 

2i6 The United States Naval Academy 

being indicated by integers and decimals, as 2.5, 3.7, 
and so on. At the end of the year the marks were added 
and averaged, and the students arranged in order; the 
holder of the highest average mark being at the head of 
the class and the rest in succession downward, as their 
averages decreased. Obviously, if all the studies should 
be deemed of like importance, a general standing for the 
class could easily be made up by taking the average of 
all the average marks of each student, and arranging the 
members of the class in order on this basis. But this was, 
and still is, far from the case, because certain branches 
of study, notably seamanship, gunnery, navigation, and 
others of a professional character, are always given greater 
weight than those pertaining to general education. 

Hence the old system prevalent in Midshipman 
Dewey's time was first to arrange the members of each 
class in each study with respect to their final average 
marks in that study. Then the weight assigned to each 
study would be given to the highest student therein, and 
would represent a maximum. A minimum (usually one 
third the maximum) would be assigned to the student 
standing lowest in the same branch ; while, to the inter- 
mediate students, numbers based on the common differ- 
ences of the arithmetical progression from the maximum 
to the minimum would be given. In this way the merit 
roll for that study was made up. To get the general 
merit roll the numbers obtained by each student on the 
several merit rolls of the different studies were added, 
and the members of the class rearranged in accordance 
with the totals. Consequently, although a student might 
be low down in his class in a given study, his high 


''/. ///J 4c.AOi:u.tC itojtuj) ,/ //, 

// u'///y/ /// // f /A/ .1/1 ////fit r////i'. '// 

////// ////// 

' // /// '/ /// 

//„ .^ '////. y,v////,v ////// ///■ (i'l'ftitu-nfi' '(if(5')iM6iratiou:" 

J.- ./„y,/ ,„ //, y..,, -/■//, '/.,,//„. /I.,.,,,./.,,,// /:„„./„,/ 



■A„/,/,./"/.u,, .///, ■//,,//„/ A.-. 


The Academy before the Civil War 2 1 7 

standing in a study of superior weight might be sufficient 
to bring him to better place on the general roll. 

When Midshipman Dewey came up for his first ex- 
amination the relative weights were actually as follows : 
arithmetic and algebra, 20; grammar, 10; geography and 
history, 25; drawing, 15; and conduct, 5. His low 
standing in conduct therefore did him little harm, al- 
though he had 113 demerits (and 200 might have dis- 
missed him), because of its relatively small weight, while 
his standing in mathematics pulled him up against the 
depressing influence of geography and history. But 
none the less it would have required but a small change 
in the totals to have sent him down below No. 38 ; and 
then the story of the battle of Manila might have had 
to be differently written. 

Next year he did better, although nine of his class, 
failed and dropped out, leaving but twenty-nine in all. 
The studies and the weights had now changed. The 
heavy ones were mathematics and French, then came 
drawing, then conduct, and finally history, which had 
given him so much trouble during the preceding year 
(possibly because his gift lay rather in making it than 
learning it), had but small influence on the general result, 
which raised him to No. 9 on the merit roll. On his- 
final examination he advanced to No. 5, but his class, 
meanwhile had undergone much depletion and now 
numbered but fifteen, or just twenty per cent, of all that 

None the less the future Admiral fairly earned the star 
which goes to each of the five highest men of the class, 
and perhaps viewed it no less proudly than he did the 

2i8 The United States Naval Academy 

constellation which came to him just forty years later. 
It is an amusing circumstance that his lowest standing 
was in naval tactics and gunnery, the two essentials 
which won the fight at Cavitd, and his highest in the 
Spanish language. 

There are few midshipmen, however, who have left 
behind them in the memories of their classmates more 
charming recollections than " Shang " Dewey, as his 
young comrades affectionately termed him. They all 
dwell even now upon his personal magnetism as a boy, 
upon his popularity, upon his marked refinement and 
natural dignity. There is no deviltry charged to him. 
He became a first captain when in the senior class, and 
his ofificer-like qualities and perfect assurance in places 
of authority were as well marked from the beginning as 
they became in after-life. There are, unfortunately, no ' 
memorials of his youthful days which might find place in 
these pages, not even a picture of him as a midshipman, 
nor even his first warrant. He says that they were all 
burned on the Mississippi when she was destroyed during 
Farragut's attack on Port Hudson in 1863. 

Captain George S. Blake, who succeeded Commander 
Goldsborough in September, 1857, held the position of 
Superintendent longer than any of his predecessors, and 
through perhaps the most critical period in the existence 
of the Academy. Blake entered the service in 1818, and 
reached his captaincy in 1855. He had served on the 
West Indian station during the suppression of piracy, 
had been wrecked in the brig Perry, and had had much 
experience in the coast survey. He had been a capable 
ofBcer of the old school in his younger days ; but he left 

The Academy before the Civil War 219 

the discipline of the Academy mainly to his Command- 
ant of Midshipmen. Lieutenant C. R. P. Rodgers, 
who held that post, was the first to draw marked distinc- 
tions between the several classes, making the first class 
into the quasi-aristocracy which it has since, with some 
interruption, remained. The object of drawing the class 
lines and of making a particularly broad division between 
the first class and the other classes was to lead the 
students to enforce discipline upon one another ; a result 
which clearly could not be accomplished unless between 
seniors and juniors a certain official reserve and distance 
were maintained. Before Blake's term ended, the first 
class was permitted special privileges and to wear parts 
of the uniform distinctly different from the rest of the 

Commander Craven, Blake's first executive officer, 
commanded the practice ships during the cruises of 1851, 
1852, 1853, and 1854. He returned to the command of 
the Preble in 1858 with enlarged ideas, and established a 
routine which remained typical for many years. The 
midshipmen were kept in two watches from 8 A.M. to 8 
P.M., and in four watches during the remaining twelve 
hours. They formed six guns' crews, four stationed at 
the guns and two in the masters' and powder divisions. 
Every morning the watch on deck was exercised aloft at 
reefing, furling, loosing, and bending sails, and other 
evolutions, and for three hours daily they worked at 
marlinspike seamanship. In the afternoon the watch 
below studied navigation, and at 4 P.M. there was drill at 
quarters. The first-class men took turns as deck officers 
and navigators, and, in brief, the true idea of a practice 

2 20 The United States Naval Academy 

cruise — to give the students the greatest variety of in- 
struction in practical seamanship — was, for the first time, 
fully and ably realized. 

So far as the treatment of the youngsters was con- 
cerned, however, it was not much better than on the 
earlier cruises. In fact, it never seemed to dawn on the 
authorities of the Naval Academy of that day that there 
was a distinction possible between a lot of boys fresh 
from the tender influences of home and an equal number 
of rollicking reefers just from the "roaring Brandywine." 
So they starved them, and to some extent bullied them, 
and the boys retorted, boy-fashion, by doing the things 
which gave their superiors the most worry. It needs no 
argument to show that ship's rations of " salt horse" and 
pork, and dirty water from the bottoms of tanks, was not 
an appropriate diet for growing youth; not even when 
this enticing bill of fare was varied, as it was, by the sole 
addition of detestable ham. The result is exemplified in 
a single instance which occurred during the cruise of 

The midshipmen of the Plymouth were taken ashore at 
Brest, France, as usual in charge of an officer, to inspect 
the great ship-yards and fortifications. Their stomachs 
being empty, they prevailed on their good-natured super- 
visor to permit them to devote a portion of their time to 
devouring the contents of the eating-houses. Then their 
natural sense of mischief asserted itself, and when they 
returned to the ship it was noted as a curious fact that 
most of them were provided with the long cylindrical 
French loaves of bread, which they hugged under their 
arms. Of course they were inspected as they came over 




The Academy before the Civil War 221 

the gangway ; but even the most lynx-eyed official never 
dreamed that there was any hidden evil in these inno- 
cent-appearing loaves. Nevertheless, shortly afterwards, 
several of the boys were found intoxicated. Then it 
was discovered that the interior of the loaves had been 
scooped out and bottles of wine inserted therein, upon 
the contents of which they had regaled themselves. It 
is not to be supposed that these boys had any particular 
taste for wine or felt any need for it. They knew, how- 
ever, that nothing was more sternly proscribed than in- 
dulgence of that sort, and therefore they retaliated in 
that way. 

When the new term opened at Annapolis in 1859, it 
was found that the buildings had become too small to 
accommodate the increased number of students. The 
Plymouth was then converted from a practice ship to a 
school-ship. Her battery was removed with the excep- 
tion of four guns, her main deck was converted into a 
study and recitation-room, and supplies of gas and steam 
were carried to her from shore. The entering fourth 
class was sent directly on board of her, messing and 
sleeping on the berth-deck. She proved, however, un- 
suited for the purpose in view, and it was a happy 
thought to send in place of her the famous frigate 

Material improvement was now made in the teaching 
force by the inclusion in it of a larger proportion than 
ever of young line officers of the Navy. Among them 
was Lieutenant (now Rear-Admiral) Stephen B. Luce, 
who came as an assistant to the Commandant. 

It is difficult to convey to any one not of the Navy an 

222 The United States Naval Academy 

adequate appreciation of Rear-Admiral Luce's great ser- 
vice to the cause of naval education, unless adequate 
record is made of the admirable work of his later years 
in the establishment of the War College and of the Naval 
Apprentice system, of both of which he was the origina- 
tor. But Luce's Seamanship, which was written for the 
midshipmen, and which appeared in 1862, has been the 
authoritative text-book of the Navy on its subject ever 
since, and is so still. Its production grew out of a neces- 
sity. While there existed abundant technical treatises 
on navigation and other scientific subjects within the 
purview of the naval ofificer, those on seamanship were 
few and imperfect. Sailing-Master William Brady's 
Kedge Anchor, which appeared in 1847, was the best at 
its date, and for that reason it had been adopted at the 
Naval Academy. 

Nevertheless, it did not fit the needs of the midship- 
men of the United States Navy, and that fact had been 
recognized in the most convincing manner for many years 
by the habit, which had hardened into a fixed custom, 
peculiar to nearly every line officer of preparing one's 
own manuscript vade mecum on the subject.' 

Lieutenant Luce contemplated the preparation of an 

' The library of the United States Naval Academy possesses some typical 
documents of this sort, written with painstaking elaboration back in the 
" twenties" by Midshipman Thomas H. Wyman — and they may be com- 
mended to the examination of the naval cadet, who may be curious to see 
the thorny path which his professional ancestor trod in endeavoring to 
acquire the knowledge which is brought to him so thoroughly and easily 
to-day. They teem with tables of equipments and stores, rules for cutting 
and fitting rigging and precepts for evolutions and the best ways for doing 
things in the man-of-war world. It may also interest him to know that his 
predecessors at the Naval Academy not only studied from such manuscripts, 
but were required to copy them in full. 

The Academy before the Civil War 223 

all-embracing compendium of the subject. But a serious 
obstacle opposed him. Craven — Commandant of Mid- 
shipmen, captain of the practice ship, and arch-seaman 
of the Navy — had announced his intention of evolving 
such a volume in collaboration with Lieutenant Marcy ; 
and with such an authority Luce's natural diffidence 
would not permit him to compete. The fates, however, 
willed otherwise. Craven left his manuscript unfinished, 
and it went down in the Housatonic when she was blown 
up by a Confederate " David " torpedo off Charleston 
harbor. Marcy's notes were too crudely prepared to be 
of any use. 

In 1862, after the battle of Port Royal, in which he 
took part. Luce was ordered back to -the Academy in 
charge of the department of seamanship. Then, to use 
his own words, 

" while waiting for something better to turn up I cut out from 
several text-books that had been used by my predecessors such 
parts as had been given to the midshipmen, put them together, 
and gave them to a printer here (Newport, R. I.) to be pub- 
lished. The work was done in a hurry ; first to save my copy- 
ing of manuscript, second, because I knew I would have to go 
to sea again. That was the beginning of the text-book now in 

But only the beginning, because it was revised and 
revised by its author and others, as the years went by, 
and every youngster has grappled with it until its very 
words are crystallized into the brain structure of the 
Navy personnel. 

It came to be almost implicitly followed. Indeed, 
there is a story that one youngster during his first tour 

2 24 The United States Naval Academy 

on duty as a deck officer on a sailing sloop-of-war care- 
fully tore out the pages of Luce whereon are printed 
the orders for tacking ship, and put them in his pocket 
ready for the emergency which might call for that evolu- 
tion. Sure enough it came, and boldly he thundered 
forth his commands, squinting sideways meanwhile at the 
pages concealed in his cloak. The ship with her helm 
down came well up into the wind. 

" Maintopsail haul! " he roared, and the after-yards 
flew round. 

The next order would bring over the head-yards on the 
new tack and his troubles would be ended. He turned 
the page, got the wrong one, glanced down, read what 
he saw instinctively, and, to the astonishment of the crew 
and the fury of his captain, shouted — 
Let go the starboard anchor! " 

Some of the older sons of the brine looked askance at 
Luce's Seamanship as calculated to make " book sailors " ; 
but no one warned the youngsters more emphatically 
against so becoming than Captain Luce, or required of 
them, when serving under him, a greater exercise of 
original intelligence. Indeed, it is said that there was 
much woe always in store for the unlucky deck officer 
who might venture to cite the book to its author as an 
authority in his own defence. 

Among the midshipmen who entered in i860 was 
Pierre d'Orldans, Due de Penthievre, son of the Prince 
de Joinville, who had been admitted as a special student 
out of courtesy to the French Government. He was the 
first foreigner thus permitted to join the Naval Academy. 
As he was advanced in studies beyond the average 

(Author of "Luce's Seamanship.") 

The Academy before the Civil War 225 

candidate, a special course was arranged for him. His 
academic career was highly creditable ; he learned rapidly, 
and on the practice cruise of 1863 navigated the Mace- 
donian from Cadiz to New York. He lassed an excellent 
examination for lieutenant in the fall of that year, and 
then resigned. The youngsters, of course, refused to be 
overawed by his title, and, in fact, irreverently gave him 
a nickname ; but his unaffected demeanor and manifest 
ability made them all his cordial friends, and left only 
the pleasantest memories of him in the Navy. 

The Due de Penthifevre was by no means the first 
foreign midshipman permitted to serve temporarily in 
our Navy. In the early " forties," four Brazilian midship- 
men were received for instruction on our cruisers; and 
on board of the St. Lawrence in the European Squadron 
in 1848 we had four German midshipmen admitted under 
like conditions. The American youngsters of that vessel 
concluded that the Germans were put there to do all the 
work — especially boat duty — which by any ingenuity 
they could put off on them, and that state of affairs con- 
tinued until the Teutons rebelled, and enforced a declara- 
tion of independence vi et armis so effectively that ever 
afterwards no one ventured to ask them to do more than 
their fair share. One of these German midshipmen was 
Admiral Bartsch of the Imperial German navy, between 
whom and a messmate of the St. Lawrence — Rear Ad- 
miral Henry Erben — there remained one of those, long 
and delightful friendships so peculiar to naval Hfe, which 
ended only when the veteran German sailor, fifty-one 
years later, forever terminated his distinguished career. 

The Academy had now completed fifteen years of 

2 26 The United States Naval Academy- 
existence. It had survived much of the opposition 
which it had encountered in the beginning ; and in fact 
during the last five years had been constantly gaining 
new support among the more progressive men in the 
Navy. The naval officers of the Board of i860 spoke in 
their report of the institution as promising " to the'Navy 
a high standard of general and professional knowledge. ' ' 
There were twenty-five men in the graduating class of 
that year, among them Midshipmen (now Rear-Admirals) 
John Crittenden Watson and Winfield Scott Schley. 
The practice cruise was made on the Plymouth to Madeira 
and Spain. When studies were resumed in October, the 
total number of acting midshipmen in attendance was 281. 

At the Naval Academy. 








Wherein the Midshipmen of the North and the Midshipmen of the 
South Bid One Another a Tearful Farewell ; and the Naval 
Academy, Taking Refuge on the Conqueror of the " Java " 
and the " Guerri&re," Sails Away to Newport 

A CRISIS was now fast approaching in the life of the 
nation, and the questions which rent the whole 
country were soon under debate by the young 
representatives of every section of it assembled at the 
school. Many of them had been in the service long 
enough to have become weaned from State associations 
and to accept the time-honored Navy tenet that the 
Government of the United States is its party, regardless 
of individual political faiths. There was more moderation 
in the discussions between these boys than in many of 
those in which their fathers were daily taking part. But 
as the States began to secede the pressure from home 
upon them became too powerful to resist. The Northern 
youngsters labored hard with their Southern comrades. 
The Commandant (Rodgers) exerted all his powers of 
persuasion, sending for the disaffected ones and using 
every argument and every appeal which his ingenuity 
could devise to keep them loyal to the Union. In the 


2 28 The United States Naval Academy 

end, the stern parental command would usually arrive, 
and the boy, minus his buttons and anchors, would sadly 
wend his way to the Academy gates never to return. 

The first resignation occurred in December, i860. In 
the following month, that of an acting midshipman from 
Mobile, Alabama, who was an honor man of the first 
class and highly popular, followed. The entire first class 
gathered and marched solemnly, with Acting Midship- 
man William T. Sampson — the other honor man — in the 
lead and arm in arm with the departing member, past 
the quarters and so to the walk which ran in front of the 
officers' houses to the gate, singing in chorus a farewell 
song. As they came in front of the Commandant's 
house. Lieutenant Rodgers suddenly appeared. 

" What is the meaning of this rioting on Sunday 
night ? " he demanded sharply. 

" No riot, sir," replied the leader; " we are only 
bidding our classmate good-by." 

" Go on, gentlemen," said the commandant, simply; 
and the dreary little procession resumed its march. 

Night after night the Southerners from the States 
trembling on the brink of secession would gather in a 
room with carefully blanketed windows, where they ate 
suppers brought in from Dautd's eating-house in town, 
smoked, and gravely listened to the reading, by the light 
of a dark lantern, of the news of the impending struggle. 
And then they talked with such knowledge as they had 
about what they should do when the time came for final 
decision between the old flag and the new. Some of 
them appeared with secession badges, which Captain 
Blake promptly suppressed. 


Superintendent of the U. S. Naval Academy during the Civil War. 

The Migration to Newport 229 

When Fort Sumter was fired upon, academic routine 
ended. The grounds of the school were put in condition 
for defence. Howitzers were installed at the gates. 
Captain Blake hastened to notify the Navy Department 
that there was great danger of an attack by the Mary- 
land secessionists on account of the assumed advantage 
of the position as a base of military operations against 
Washington, and with the further object of capturing the 
supply of arms and ammunition on hand. He warned 
the Department that not only was the place not defen- 
sible against a superior force, but that his only resource 
lay in the students, " many of whom are little boys, 
and some of whom are citizens of the seceded States." 
Finally, he proposed, in event of assault, to destroy the 
munitions of war in the yard, and after embarking the 
midshipmen on the Constitution, to defend her in the har- 
bor or take her to New York or Philadelphia. He also 
asked for the practice ship Plymouth as a further safe- 

The position of the Constitution was somewhat critical. 
The Southerners were freely boasting that she should 
carry the first rebel flag afloat. She was fast aground at 
high water, the only channel through which she could 
be taken was narrow and difficult, and she was in easy 
range of any battery which might be installed on the 
neighboring heights. 

The midshipmen were kept constantly under arms. 
Frequently they were summoned to prepare to resist an 
assault. On the 20th of April, the Norfolk Navy Yard 
was evacuated and destroyed. On the same date the 
Secretary of the Navy telegraphed to Commodore Blake 

230 The United States Naval Academy 

to " defend the Constitution at all hazards. If it cannot 
be done, destroy her. ' ' Blake received intelligence which 
led him to believe that an immediate attack upon the 
ship was contemplated, and he at once took measures 
to meet it. To obtain timely warning of its approach, 
which he expected would be by water from the direction 
of Baltimore, the little schooner Rainbow was sent out as 
a scout. Early on the morning of April 21st, the Rain- 
bow came in with the news that a large steamer was in 
sight, and it was assumed at once that the threatened 
attack was now to be made. The drums beat the as- 
sembly, and every available gun was trained upon the 
incoming vessel. 

Meantime, Lieutenant Edmund O. Matthews was sent 
off in a boat to board her and ascertain, if possible, her 
character. As he came near he was hailed with, 

" What boat is that ?" 

" What steamer is that ? " was the reply. 

" None of your business! Come alongside, or I will 
fire into you." 

Matthews complied, and on reaching the deck was 
arrested by two soldiers. He announced his name and 
mission to an ofiScer before whom he was brought, and 
then to his relief found that he was confronting General 
Benjamin F. Butler, who had seized the ferryboat Mary- 
land, and with the 8th Massachusetts regiment was about 
to land at Annapolis. 

Shortly afterwards Captain Blake himself came aboard. 
Butler says, in his description of the ensuing scene, that 
Blake, on learning his purpose, burst into tears, exclaim- 

The Migration to Newport 231 

" Thank God, thank God! Won't you save the Con- 
stitution ? ' ' 

" I did not know," continues Butler, " that he referred 
to the ship Constitution, and I answered, 

" ' Yes, that is what I am here for.' 

" ' Are those your orders ? Then the old ship is safe.' 

" ' I have no orders,' said I. ' I am carrying on this 
war now on my own hook. I cut loose from my orders 
when I left Philadelphia. What do you want me to do 
to save the Constitution ? ' 

" ' I want some sailormen,' he answered, ' for I have 
no sailors; I want to get her out and get her afloat.' 

" ' Oh, well,' said I, ' I have plenty of sailormen from 
the town of Marblehead, where their fathers built the 
Constitution.' " 

So Butler detailed his best drilled company — the Salem 
Zouaves — to guard the ship, sent a lot of Marblehead 
fishermen to report to Rodgers, the Commandant, and 
Rodgers, to quote Butler once more, " worked with a 
will, and I shall not forget my delight at his efficiency. ' ' 

The arrival of Butler seems to have been in the very 
nick of time, for Blake, writing under date of April 22d, 
says that the Constitution, " but for the presence of Gen- 
eral Butler's command, would have been boarded last 

Commandant Rodgers, with the aid of Butler's men, 
transferred all the upper-deck guns from the Constitution 
to the Maryland, thus lightening the vessel. Then the 
Maryland made fast to the towing hawsers, and the 
moorings of the_ old ship being slipped, she was slowly 
hauled out of her berth only to go at once into the mud. 

232 The United States Naval Academy 

By dint of much labor she was once more got afloat and 
proceeded on her journey, but early in the evening she 
took the bottom again off Greenbury Point Light. As 
night came on the condition of affairs grew critical. The 
tide was rapidly falling and the ship settling i-n the shoal, 
when a message came that the outside channel was being 
obstructed, and that there were" indications that the 
threatened attack would be made before morning. Kedge 
anchors were laid out and an effort made to haul the ship 
into deep water, which had hardly succeeded before a 
heavy squall threw her aground again. Vessels began to 
appear in the ofifing, and the volunteer crew prepared for 

But it was a false alarm. The newcomers were 
friendly, and one of them hauled the Constitution into 
deep water, where she anchored. Then her guns were 
replaced, so that she was now ready to cover the landing 
of the troops and stores, which, owing to the burning of 
the bridges of the Philadelphia and Baltimore Railroad, 
was to be made at Annapolis. 

Meanwhile the school had been turned into an encamp- 
ment. The Massachusetts troops were soon joined by 
the 7th Regiment from New York City, to the officers of 
which the first class gave up their rooms. The colonel, 
in recognition of their coitrtesy, ordered a drill for their 
benefit. That rather worried the youngsters, who wished 
to return the compliment in kind, lest the civilians should 
overwhelm them with their superior military skill, but, 
as usual, Lockwood was equal to the occasion. He chose 
artillery drill for exhibition, in which the evolutions were 
executed at double quick. The 7th Regiment had had 


The Migration to Newport 233 

no experience in rapid mancEuvres of that sort, and the 
light-footed youngsters were entirely at home in them. 
Therefore no comparisons could be instituted, and the 
situation was saved. 

On the 24th of April, Superintendent Blake, finding it 
impossible to continue academic routine with the grounds 
and buildings occupied by the troops, directed the trans- 
fer of the acting midshipmen to the Constitution, which 
meanwhile had been covering the entrance of the trans- 
ports to the harbor. 

The time for departure had now come. The boys from 
the North and the boys from the South were finally to 
separate, and the grief of parting was keen. Then the 
class of 1 86 1 met and smoked a pipe of peace and 
solemnly pledged themselves to care for one another 
however much they might become enemies. Even the 
non-smokers indulged in a few whiffs. A watchman 
reported the whole party for smoking in quarters, but 
Rodgers ignored the charge. And then followed the 
saddest gathering which had ever taken place within the 
Academy walls. The buildings were to be given up to 
the troops, and the students were ordered to embark in 
the Constitution, and sail with her to New York. The 
drums beat as usual for formation, and they fell in. 
Northerners and Southerners alike, with their mess crews. 
Commandant Rodgers had caused the band to be present, 
and it played the music of the Union. 

As the strains of "The Star-Spangled Banner" and 
" Hail Columbia " poured forth, the youngsters from the 
South stood there with pale faces and set teeth. Then 
Commandant Rodgers spoke to them quietly and plead- 

234 The United States Naval Academy 

ingly, and finally, when he had said to them all that could 
be said, he ordered those who so desired to fall out of the 
ranks. The boys from the States which had thrown off 
their allegiance left their places. And then came the 
farewell, and it was pitiful. The arms of those who were 
to go to the North and of those who were to go to the 
South went about one another's necks and the tears 
flowed, and hands linked in a last fond clasp which later 
were to be raised in bitter enmity. Then the order to 
leave was given. The Northerners embarked on the 
tug which was to take them to the ship. The South- 
erners made their way homeward as best they could, 
and the old Constitution, with the flag which she had so 
often carried to victory flying at her peak as of yore, 
stood dov/n the Chesapeake, and laid her course to the 
loyal North. 

A message from the Navy Department to Captain 
Blake, to hold the Constitution at Annapolis for the pro- 
tection of the troops, arrived on the 26th of April, but 
she had departed the day before, and on the 29th Lieu- 
tenant George W. Rodgers, her commander, reported his 
arrival at the New York Navy Yard. For the second 
time in its history the Naval School now asked the Army 
for an abiding-place, and with the consent of the Secre- 
tary of War, Fort Adams, in Newport harbor, was desig- 
nated as a new home for the midshipmen, and thither the 
Constitution was directed to repair. Shortly after her 
departure from Annapolis, the library records and appa- 
ratus of the Academy were placed on board the transport 
Baltic, on which vessel the professors and officer^ took 
passage. She reached Newport, Rhode Island, on the 

The Migration to Newport 235 

9th of May, at which place the Constitution had already 
arrived some hours earlier. The midshipmen were dis- 
embarked and quartered at Fort Adams under the charge 
of Commandant Rodgers, the Superintendent having 
temporarily remained at Annapolis, and Rodgers, with 
characteristic energy, set the school going again. 

The disaffection among the officers and professors at- 
tached to the Naval Academy was restricted to but few. 
Lieutenant William Harwar Parker, the instructor in sea- 
manship, who resigned his commission on the secession 
of Virginia, was the principal member of the faculty to 
leave. He subsequently organized the Naval Academy 
of the Confederate States. The Navy Department in- 
stituted a searching investigation to discover the exist- 
ence of sympathy for the rebellion among the officers 
who remained on duty, and demanded of each of them 
positive assurance of his allegiance, besides an opinion as 
to whether there was any latent leaning toward the Con- 
federacy among his associates. All gave the necessary 
adhesion to the Union, although one professor manifested 
a burning desire to argue the right of secession with the 
Navy Department. 

Professor Lockwood at once sought for active service 
in the Army, and raised the first regiment of Delaware 
volunteers, which he trained and drilled as enthusias- 
tically as he had the midshipmen. Shortly afterwards 
he was made a brigadier-general, and in that capacity 
earned high distinction. At the end of the war, having 
participated in many of the battles and after four years' 
work, he was mustered out, and in August, 1865, re- 
turned to his duties as a professor at the Naval Academy. 


Wherein the War-Time Sojourn of the Naval Academy in an Old 
Summer Hotel at Newport, and the Miseries of Plebe Life 
on the School-Ships off Goat Island are Recalled ; together 
with the Story of the Exciting Practice Cruises of 1862, 
1863, and 1864, in one of which Captain Luce by an Ingenious 
Stratagem Essayed to Catch the " Alabama " 

THE country was now rushing to arms. The Navy 
had hitherto been more of a Southern institution 
than a Northern one. The defection among the 
best officers was large. The vacancies were great in 
every grade. Most of the line officers attached to the 
Academy were at once ordered to the front. Even be- 
fore the midshipmen left Annapolis, ten members of the 
first class were sent into active service. On the loth of 
May, 1861, the entire battalion, excepting the fourth 
class, was ordered to fighting vessels. The class which 
had entered in 1857 had practically completed its four- 
years' course, but the junior classes, which had entered 
in 1858 and 1859, had studied little more than the rudi- 
ments. Nevertheless, so urgent was the need for officers, 
they were sent out. In this way 112 officers — mere boys 
most of them — were added to the fleet. Seventeen of 



The Academy During the Civil War 237 

them now (1900) survive in the active service, and the 
majority of them are rear-admirals. 

Before the month of May had expired, it was proposed 
to send forth the remaining fourth elass. Then Rodgers 
protested. It would " virtually destroy the school," he 
said, " and undo the work of years. . . . Why kill 
the bird that lays the golden egg ? " In the same letter 
to Senator Grimes, he begs for active service for the 
youngsters in another form, and asks 

" that some practice ships should be fitted out, this summer, 
in which I might take the midshipmen to the enemy's coast, 
and there teach them their duty afloat in actual war service. 
. . . Our lads did not falter when in hourly expectation of 
an attack at Annapolis, and I think we could pledge ourselves 
that the Government would find the practice ship an efficient 
cruiser. ... I should esteem such service a very high 

Captain Blake did not approve Rodgers's project. On 
the contrary, he writes to the Department under date of 
June 3, 1861, that drill at the guns of the Constitution, 
boat and howitzer exercise, infantry drill, and seamanship 
evolutions also on the Constitution, and instructions in 
French and navigation " would fill up the time of the 
young gentlemen very advantageously, and be, in my 
opinion, the best substitute for the usual cruise." 

Blake's plan was followed, and Rodgers loyally bent 
all his energies to make it successful. A rigging loft was 
fitted up at Fort Adams, and there Sailmaker Blyden- 
burgh taught marlinspike seamanship. On the Constitu- 
tion, the midshipmen were regularly exercised in all the 
evolutions which could be performed at anchor. They 

238 The United States Naval Academy 

made little cruises in the little schooner Rainbow, 
and in that way learned to steer and heave the lead. 
They made drawinigs of all parts of the Constitution. 
They fired great guns until they could hit a target at a 
thousand yards' distance one time in three. They organ- 
ized boat expeditions, and bravely invaded the islands in 
Narragansett Bay. Lieutenant Simpson taught them 
gunnery; Edward Seager, Professor of Drawing, and 
Lieutenant-Commander George W. Rodgers instructed 
them in fencing; Professor John H. C. Cofifin, assisted 
by Professors Winlock, Wilcox, Smith, and Beecher, con- 
ducted a course in mathematics and navigation ; Professor 
Girault, assisted by Professors Dovilliers and Roget, in- 
structed them in French and Spanish, and, in brief, they 
had no lack of occupation. 

In September, the Constitution, which had been 
anchored off Fort Adams, was brought into the inner 
harbor and moored close to the shore of Goat Island. 
The incoming fourth class, abnormally large and num- 
bering 203 youngsters, was quartered on board of her. 
The third class, hitherto at Fort Adams, was removed to 
the Atlantic House, an old-fashioned summer hotel in 
the city of Newport, which was rented for the purpose. 
The building, long since removed, was of brick and wood, 
painted white, and of the Greek Parthenon type of archi- 
tecture, with huge pillars on the porch, so dear to the 
hearts of the generation of sixty or seventy years ago. 
It was situated on the corner of Pelham and Touro 
Streets, facing the public square on which the old mill 
stands. As it had no extensive grounds connected with 
it, the Academy limits were not walled in, and were 

>r.-arr-ywy^ f 


The Academy During the Civil War 239 

arbitrarily designated as the " enclosures of the Atlantic 
House and Touro Park." They included the Park 
square and Touro Street as far southward as the hotel 
extended. Beyond these bounds the midshipmen were 
forbidden to pass, except when given liberty on Satur- 
days and holidays. Close watch was kept on the saloons 
and restaurants, and severe penalties prescribed for visit- 
ing them. Even the harmless candy-stores were made 
to participate in enforcing the police regulations, for the 
owners were warned if they permitted midshipmen to- 
enter them at unauthorized times, or, worse still, sold 
the students tobacco or liquor, they would be rigidly 
boycotted by the Naval Academy authorities. A con- 
fectioner famous for his cream cakes, whose shop was. 
within bounds, reaped a golden harvest, while a rival 
just over the edge protested in vain, and finally got cast 
into permanent outer darkness for alluring the midship- 
men beyond the limits by the adventitious aid of sherry 

There was a little restaurant in the town the proprietor 
of which discovered how to make oyster pies as well as. 
the famous Daut6 of Annapolis; and Muenchinger, re- 
christened ' ' Buntjigger ' ' by the youngsters, fed liberty 
parties on many a Saturday, and waxed proportionately 
wealthy. Of course, theatres and shows were taboo. 
Once or twice the students were marched in a body to- 
stereopticon exhibitions and concerts, but at the former 
they " devilled " the lecturer, because they got the idea, 
that he had said that ' ' niggers and midshipmen would be 
admitted at half price." 

The old hotel had a large main hall (decorated with. 

240 The United States Naval Academy 

Lawrence's " Don't give up the ship " flag), with cross 
passages on the lower floor, one of which led to the 
officers' quarters, and the other to the mess-room. The 
recitation-rooms were mainly on the floor above, and 
over this were the students' apartments, into which they 
were packed, sometimes four in a room. The junior- 
class was in the loftiest story. The regular formations 
took place sometimes in the main hall and sometimes 
on a closed-in piazza on the west side. Section forma- 
tions were on the third floor, whence the sections marched 
to the recitation-rooms. 

Infantry and artillery drills were held in a pasture near 
Ochre Point — now the site of magnificent villas, — to 
and from which the battalion marched preceded by the 
Academy band. Seamanship drills took place on the 
practice ships anchored in the harbor, and for target- 
firing there was a little battery of 32-pounders in a shed 
on Goat Island. To reach the ships or the battery, the 
battalion marched down Pelham Street to the Fanny, a 
little steamer which had a capacity for carrying an extraor- 
dinary number of people and a way of getting around 
the bay in all weathers with her gunwales nearly awash. 

The midshipmen who entered in October, 1861, were, 
however, first quartered on the Constitution. Then they 
went to the Atlantic House, and the following entering 
class took their place. The system thus became estab- 
lished of retaining the new class on the school-ship during 
its first year at the Academy. The Constitution was 
moored on the town side of Goat Island, and from her 
deck a gangway led ashore. There were no permanent 
buildings then on the island, save the few belonging to 




The Academy During the Civil War 241 

the old fort. A number of flimsy wooden structures were 
erected for recitation-rooms, and there the instructors 
and pupils rolled up in overcoats shivered during the 
bitter winter weather. 

In the spring of 1862, the frigate Santee was sent to 
Newport as an additional school-ship, and moored ahead 
of the Constitution. If the Constitution was an object- 
lesson tending to inculcate patriotism, the Santee was 
eminently well suited to excite different sentiments. 
She was a " political ship," built piecemeal about election 
time for many years by prospective voters who had to be 
" taken care of." Her keel was laid at the Portsmouth 
(New Hampshire) Navy Yard in 1820 — and thirty-five 
years afterwards she was launched. She had no historic 
record, and her service had been very limited. She is 
now winding up her career at Annapolis as the guard- 
house for recalcitrant cadets, and the term " Santeeing " 
is the modern Naval Academy slang for imprisonment 
on her murky berth-deck. 

Nothing could have been more desolate than the out- 
look to the " plebe " whose first experience brought him 
on these school-ships. During the day, he sat and studied 
at one of the desks, long rows of which extended up and 
down the gun-deck, and occasionally marched ashore to 
the windy recitation-rooms, where he contracted bad 
colds along with a knowledge of arithmetic. The com- 
missary department was always more or less out of gear, 
and the meals eaten in the blackness of the berth-deck 
by the light of a few ill-smelling oil lamps were wretched. 
Their chief peculiarity was occasional " runs " on some 

special menu; fresh pork, for example, in congealed 


242 The United States Naval Academy 

chunks, followed by fearful cranberry pie, once prevailed 
for some weeks. The midshipmen all slept in hammocks, 
and, for the first fortnight, punctuated the still hours of 
the night with stunning thuds on the deck, as they con- 
tinued experiments to discover in how many different 
ways they could fall out of them. 

At six o'clock, in the dark of the winter's morning, the 
drums would beat, and then twelve minutes were allowed 
to get attired and lash up hammocks with " seven turns 
of the lashing equally spaced," and carry them on the 
upper deck for stowage. After that, it was the custom 
for a time to send all hands aloft over the mastheads and 
down again — this by way of an appetizer, which was 
wholly unnecessary, — and then a brief toilet was per- 
mitted in the wash-room forward, where much of the 
limited time accorded was wasted in struggles for the 
possession of the few tin basins provided. 

At four o'clock, after study hours, the youngsters were 
drilled at infantry on the bleak unobstructed plain of 
Goat Island, over which the wind howled dismally, and 
the snow was often above their shoes. When there was 
a tempest, they were allowed to remain on board and 
march about the decks, or haul around the now archaic 
guns — old 32-pounders mounted on wooden carriages, 
not differing much from those which were on the ship 
when she thrashed the Guerriire half a century before. 
In the spring, the fourth class joined the other students 
in drill on the practice ships and in the field, at Newport. 

Of course, the ordering into active service of the mid- 
shipmen who had come from Annapolis left the class 
organization in much confusion, and this was worse 

The Academy During the Civil War 243 

confounded by the rapid admission at odd times of new 
students to fill the vacancies made by the withdrawal of 
the Southerners. In February of 1863 there was a first 
class, a second, an advanced third, a third, a first division 
and a second division of the fourth, all following separate 
courses. A year later there was no first class, but two 
divisions in each of the others ; nor did the regular four 
classes regain their normal organization until June, 1865. 
Whatever difficulties the authorities of the Academy 
may have had to encounter in administering the internal 
affairs of the institution, it is certain that very few of 
those which were expected to arise because of the trans- 
fer of the school from the seclusion of Annapolis to the 
heart of a Northern city ever presented themselves. On 
the contrary, the midshipmen were very orderly and well 
behaved. So much so that in November, 1861, the 
Mayor of Newport addressed a warm letter of com- 
mendation of their behavior to the Navy Department. 
Meanwhile, it did not take the Newport people long to 
discover that the presence of the Naval Academy was of 
great material advantage to the town. Newport had 
been a fashionable resort ten years before, but its social 
prominence had waned. A determined effort was then 
made to induce the Navy Department to establish the 
Academy permanently on Coaster's Harbor Island, in 
Narragansett Bay, which the City Council of Newport 
offered to exchange for Goat Island, in consideration of 
this proposal being accepted. At the same time, Perth 
Amboy, New Jersey, advanced its claims as an eligible 
site, mainly on the ground that the midshipmen would 
not there be exposed to the temptations of such a " gay 

244 The United States Naval Academy 

and fashionable watering-place " as, in comparison with 
Perth Amboy, Newport, despite its reduced popularity, 
undoubtedly was. 

Mr. Gideon Welles, then the Secretary of the Navy, 
was determined, however, to get the Naval Academy 
back to Annapolis at the earliest possible moment, and in 
the spring of 1862 he made a demand upon the War De- 
partment for the restoration of the place, which, however, 
the War Department, for mihtary reasons, refused. The 
Newport people continued to use every effort in behalf of 
their own scheme, but it met with the inflexible opposi- 
tion of the officers of the Naval Academy, with the result 
that the latter became extremely unpopular in the city, 
and many unavailing attempts were made to have them 
dismissed from their positions. 

In the summer of 1862, the midshipmen made cruises 
on board the sloops-of-war John Adams and Marion, but 
now under entirely new conditions. The Confederate 
privateers had been menacing the northern coast, and 
their disguises made it necessary to watch very carefully 
all craft that came in the neighborhood of our shores. 
The John Adams, under command of Lieutenant-Com- 
mander Edward Simpson, and the Marion, under com- 
mand of Lieutenant-Commander Stephen B. Luce, were 
directed to overhaul every vessel they met and satisfy 
themselves as to her identity. Both ships kept at this 
work throughout the summer, and the youngsters wit- 
nessed with great excitement the firing of blank cart- 
ridges and of shot across bows, although no captures 
were made. 

In July, the Navy was reorganized. The old grade of 

The Academy During the Civil War 245 

passed midshipman was abolished, and the new grade of 
ensign created, the law providing that midshipmen on 
graduation should be commissioned to that rank, which 
was made equal to that of second lieutenant in the Army. 
From this time forward until the graduation of the class 
of '64 the midshipmen in active service did not num- 
ber a dozen all told, including those who, during their 
summer-leave period, obtained permission to join the 
vessels on the blockade. 

The complaints of the commanding officers afloat be- 
cause of the lack of midshipmen increased. " Having 
passed through the war of '12 and with some experience 
since," wrote Flag-Officer Stringham to the Navy De- 
partment in the fall of 1861, " I cannot but contrast the 
efficiency of vessels of the present with those of a former 
date, not unfavorable to the latter, and especially remark- 
ing the great deficiency in younger officers in ships of all 
grades now, think their absence highly prejudicial." 
Others followed in like strain. Absence was clearly 
making the hearts-of-oak of the old Navy grow much 
more tender toward the vanished youngsters, but none 
the less the midshipmen came not. To take their places 
in the fleet the Navy Department renewed the appoint- 
ment of an old class of officers which had not existed 
for years — the so-called " master's mates." As the ap- 
pointments of these and other volunteer officers required 
to meet the emergency were made by wholesale, the 
attention of Congress now became drawn to the Naval 
Academy, the enemies of which were openly claiming 
that it had failed in the hour of need. 

The Chairman of the Naval Committee of the House 

246 The United States Naval Academy 

proposed the selection of midshipmen from the pupils of 
public schools and also the admission of paying scholars 
from all parts of the country, to whom the Academy 
should be thrown freely open. The Academic Board, as 
it had done before, and as it has done many times since, at 
once took up the defence of the institution, and pointed 
out that the small percentage of graduates was not due 
to the course, which in fact was not advanced enough, but 
to the low proficiency of the candidates who had been 
sent for examination, and confirmed this by statistics 
which were unanswerable. It showed that to restrict 
appointments to public school scholars would be to dis- 
criminate against a large class of well-to-do people who 
preferred not to send their sons to public schools; and 
further insisted that it would be practically impossible to 
maintain the discipline of the Academy with two bodies 
of students present on entirely different footings, or to 
prevent the constant interference of parents, backed by 
political influence, with the management of the Academy, 
when they directly paid for the tuition of their sons. The 
scheme was abandoned, and has not since been renewed. 
The summer cruise of 1863 was again in the face of 
the enemy. The midshipmen were distributed on the 
sailing sloops-of-war Marion and Macedonian and the 
famous schooner-yacht America, which had been captured 
from the Confederates and presented to the Academy. 
The Macedonian went to Europe under the command of 
Lieutenant-Commander Stephen B. Luce. The Marion, 
whose captain was Lieutenant-Commander Edmund O. 
Matthews, arrived in New York early in June, only to be 
ordered at once to sea to search for the Confederate 

The Academy During the Civil War 247 

privateer Tacony, which was burning merchantmen off 
the coast. Neither vessel caught sight of the enemy, 
and the experiences of the Marion were somewhat dis- 
astrous. She ran almost immediately into a heavy storm 
in which she was struck three times by lightning, and 
thereupon her commander says: " Having experienced 
enough Gulf Stream weather in a condemned ship,' with 
nearly all the midshipmen and acting lieutenants (mid- 
shipmen of the first class) seasick, ... I wore ship 
and ran inside Sandy Hook, where I anchored." This 
is a typical instance out of the many which occurred dur- 
ing the Civil War of the placing of grave responsibilities 
upon very young and inexperienced men. The cap- 
tain of the Marion was then twenty-seven years of age, 
the executive officer still younger, and the deck officers 
were midshipmen of less than three months' experience 
at sea. 

The Macedonian s voyage was equally futile, so far as 
catching Confederate privateers was concerned ; but her 
experience was rather more romantic. As soon as he had 
reached Plymouth, England, Lieutenant - Commander 
Luce was at once notified by the American Minister that 
there was imminent danger of his falling in with some 
Confederate cruiser, and much concern was manifested 
lest the slow old sailing vessel should become an easy 
victim to the swift steamer; but Lieutenant-Commander 
Luce was very much inclined to try conclusions on that 
point, and " where the lion's skin fell short to eke it out 
with the fox's." 

For the first time in the history of the Navy, a United 
States man-of-war copied the appearance of a Spaniard. 

248 The United States Naval Academy 

The lofty sky poles of the Macedonian ' were cut down to 
stumps, her spars painted bright yellow and her sides 
black with no white stripe. Then, with a huge new 
Spanish ensign flying at her peak, instead of her own 
colors, she proceeded to patrol the Bay of Biscay. Her 
guns were loaded, but muzzle-bags were put on them so 
as to conceal the absence of tompions. A seaman who 
could speak Spanish fluently was kept ready at hand 
dressed in an ofiScer's coat, in order to answer in that 
language the hail of the expected pirate should he ven- 
ture to appear, and in this way to get him under the 
Macedonian' s powerful battery. 

It is very certain that if either the Florida or the Ala- 
bama had once got well within range a single broadside 
would have ended her career. That is what Lieutenant- 
Commander Luce and all the midshipmen on board prayed 
for. But the enemy did not appear, and at the end of 
the summer the Macedonian returned to New York, 
where Lieutenant-Commander Luce had the satisfaction 
of finding his disguise so perfect that even the American 
pilot was deceived thereby. 

During the following summer the practice ships of the 

' It has been commonly believed in the Navy that the practice ship 
Macedonian vifas the British ship captured by the United States in 1812, 
and much sentiment has been expended in regretting her sale and subse- 
quent conversion into a hotel on City Island, near New York City. The 
original Macedonian being quite a new ship was, it is true, repaired and 
taken into the Navy. She was blockaded in the Thames River until the 
close of the war, and then she served as a cruiser until 1828, from which 
time she did nothing. In 1S35 she was broken up at the Norfolk yard. 
Meanwhile Congress appropriated funds to build the new Macedonian, 
which was commenced in 1832 and launched at Gosport in 1836. She was 
rebuilt at Brooklyn in 1852. It was this second Macedonian, of course, 
which became the Naval Academy practice ship. 

The Academy During the Civil War 249 

Naval Academy for the first time sailed as a squadron. 
They were the sailing sloops Macedonian and Marion, 
the gunboat Marblehead, and the yacht America. They 
cruised around the mouth of Long Island Sound, and 
finally proceeded to Gardiner's Bay, where they began a 
course of practice evolutions, including the stripping of 
the Marion. Hardly had this work begun when a 
revenue cutter came rushing along from New London 
with the following despatch : 

" The Florida burned a vessel off Cape Henry last evening, 
and has probably gone up the coast. She has only four guns. 
Let your vessels cover the Vineyard waters, and send out the 
Marblehead in pursuit. She will probably go to your neigh- 

This had been sent from the Secretary of the Navy ta 
Commodore Blake, and was by him now forwarded to 
Commander Fairfax. The excitement of the youngsters, 
called instantly to get up anchor in the early dawn and 
to proceed to meet an enemy stated to be in the imme- 
diate vicinity, was great. Never were practice ships got 
under way quite so quickly. Every one looked with 
envying eyes upon the Marblehead, which started off to 
the eastward at the top of her speed. She went to 
Nantucket South Shoal, and stayed there for some time, 
but no Florida came her way. The Marion and America 
jointly cruised about eighty miles off Block Island, over- 
hauling everything they met. 

The Macedonian one Sunday morning sighted on the 
horizon a long, low, lead-colored steamer showing black 
smoke, and, fully believing that the famous Florida was- 
now in sight, hoisted English colors and went to quarters.. 

250 The United States Naval Academy 

The officers were firmly convinced that a fight was im- 
minent, and they walked among the midshipmen who 
were stationed at the guns encouraging them and telling 
them what to do in event of casualties. As the supposed 
privateer came nearer, it was seen that her men were also 
at quarters ; but at apparently the last minute she hoisted 
United States colors and her signal number, which 
showed that she was only a captured blockade runner 
coming north. The youngsters who made that cruise 
on the Macedonian always assert that she had the Florida 
under her guns one calm night off Block Island, and 
could have made a capture if a signal light had not been 
too hastily burned ; but of this there is no mention in the 
official reports. 

The students at the Naval Academy had meanwhile 
ceased to be acting midshipmen. The members of the 
class which entered in 1862 were the first to be given gun- 
boat appointments (so called from the engraving of the 
vessel which headed the document), which constituted 
them at once midshipmen in the Navy. Neither they 
nor the acting midshipmen who preceded them were ever 
cadets. The Secretary of the Navy writing to the Super- 
intendent of the Naval Academy, on December 27, 1869, 
held that the Act of July 16, 1862, changed the status of 
the students of the Academy, and that instead of their 
being " acting midshipmen on probation " (to be recom- 
mended later by the Superintendent and Academic 
Board for appointment as midshipmen), they were ap- 
pointed midshipmen on their entrance into the Acad- 
emy, and from that time until their promotion to the 
grade of ensign no further papers were necessary. 


s > 

The Academy During the Civil War 251 

There was a special reason for appointing the under- 
graduates to the full rank of midshipmen during the Civil 
War, and that was to insure their protection and ex- 
change in case the practice ships were captured by the 
enemy. The cartel value of a midshipman was definitely 
fixed, at that time, as equal to seven privates, or a like 
number of ordinary seamen. 

As there were but very few midshipmen in the fighting 
fleets during the Civil War, the instances of gallant deeds 
done by them are necessarily limited in number. The 
one which was perhaps the most brilliant took place at 
the capture of Roanoke Island in February, 1862. There 
Midshipman Benjamin H. Porter — a member of the class 
which entered the Naval Academy in 1859, ^^^ was 
ordered into active service in May, 1861 — fought his 
six naval howitzers (the only field-pieces employed in 
the engagement) for over three hours, and in advance 
of the troops, under a most destructive fire from the 
enemy. " They were handled, " says Rear- Admiral Golds- 
borough in his ofificial report, " with a degree of skill and 
daring which not only contributed largely to the success 
of the day, but won the admiration of all who witnessed 
the display." And yet Porter was then a boy but 
seventeen years of age. He afterwards fell gloriously 
at the assault on Fort Fisher, leaving, young as he was, 
a record for courage and ability which will always shine 
in our naval annals. 


Wherein the Graduates of the Naval Academy, Despite their At- 
tainments, Return to Midshipmen's Duty in the Steerages of 
the Cruisers ; and, the War being over, the Academy itself 
Goes Back to its Old Quarters at Annapolis to be Completely 
Remodelled by Rear-Admiral David D. Porter. 

NO one can recognize the outside influences which 
were brought to bear upon the Naval Academy 
during the period including the years 1863, 1864, 
and 1865 without experiencing a feeling of wonder that 
it managed to survive them. Certainly it was bad enough 
that it should be an exile and compelled to carry on its 
work in buildings unsuited and amid conditions which 
hampered it at every turn ; but these difficulties became 
insignificant in comparison with the attacks now directly 
made upon it. 

These had many sources. They came from the public 
which, forgetting the large proportion of naval officers 
who had left the service to follow the fortunes of the 
Confederacy, and perceiving only the urgent demand for 
volunteers, charged the school with inefficiency. They 
came from Congress, which seemed to look upon it as a 
sort of factory, capable of indefinitely increasing its out- 
put provided copious supplies of raw material of any sort 



The Return to Annapolis 253 

were maintained. They came from the ultra-conservative 
element of the " Old Navy," which insisted that the 
school was producing nothing but commissioned theorists, 
and called attention to the fact that in 1863 there were 
382 midshipmen in the Academy while the fleet had but 
nine; and that in 1864 the midshipmen ashore had in- 
creased to 457 while the midshipmen afloat numbered 
just two. 

" It is easier to lose a ship than an army," writes an 
" oldster " of the '41 date in 1865, relapsing into the r61e 
of Cassandra, — "a rush of waters, a gurgling at the 
hatches and ports, a few moments of settling, and all is 
over for ship and crew." This comes to pass: " While 
the young ensign is pondering in his mind the parallelo- 
gram of forces, these forces take a sudden diagonal, and 
it is too late." And his mourning for the lost midship- 
men grew more pathetic than ever. 

" It seemed," he says, " as if the Navy had changed its 
character. There was a vast blank where before there was 
light ; there was a solitary steerage where before it had been 
full of noisy mirth, life, and sharp cutting wit. The forecastle 
was deserted of its young lord ; the quarter-deck missed the 
young gentlemen more than I can tell. It seemed as though 
a bright light had gone suddenly out — and the ship became 
solitary and lonely." 

After which he proceeds to excoriate the " master's 
mates" who, as I have said, had succeeded to the 
vacant places in the steerage mess. 

Lastly, there were the politicians, pure and simple, 
who knew little and cared less about naval education, but 
who regarded the Naval Academy as furnishing so many 

254 The United States Naval Academy 

places wherewith to repay constituents for value had and 
received. They wanted the course rendered as elemen- 
tary as possible, so that their nominees, however ill 
prepared, could get in and through, and what they 
especially demanded was that their " pull " should never 
lack the potency to reinstate a student who had been 
found deficient and dropped. 

Eventually all of these jarring elements crystallized 
into three clearly marked parties: (i) The " popular," 
which included the politicians, the friends and relatives 
of " bilged " midshipmen seeking reinstatement, and all 
who for any reason thought the discipline too strict or 
the studies too advanced, or were malcontent in any way 
with the management of the institution ; (2) the ' ' Old 
Navy," which denounced " high science," and refused 
to be comforted for the loss of its youngsters (" treading 
them down like the main tack," being forgotten in its 
grief); and (3) the "progressive," which steadfastly 
maintained that advanced standards and a liberal edu- 
cation were consistent with the highest naval efficiency. 

The young line officers attached to the Naval Academy 
as instructors and the Assistant Secretary of the Navy, 
Mr. Gustavus V. Fox, were the chief exponents of the 
progressive party. 

Mr. Gideon Welles, the Secretary of the Navy, per- 
ceived, almost from the beginning of the war, that unless 
extraordinary means were taken to fill the Naval Acad- 
emy, the supply of officers would be choked at its foun- 
tain head. There were, of course, no appointees from 
the seceded States, and the Representatives in Congress 
from those which remained loyal had failed, in a large 

The Return to Annapolis 255 

number of instances, to make any nominations. The 
Secretary then announced that the Executive had power 
to select candidates from unrepresented districts, and 
thus proceeded to fill the vacancies. The entering 
examination was brought down to so low a level that 
any one with the barest rudiments of common school 
knowledge could pass it, and as a consequence, in Octo- 
ber, 1863, there were 489 midshipmen in the Academy, 
218 of whom were in the fourth class. That at least in- 
sured a sufficiency of grist to the mill, irrespective of the 
proportion of chaff which might be in it ; but the detri- 
mental consequences to the Navy are felt to this day. 

From 1861 to 1865, inclusive, 858 midshipmen were 
admitted. Those who were graduated were sufficient in 
numbers quickly to fill the junior commissioned grades. 
The sixteen senior midshipmen of the seventy-eight 
graduates of 1868 became lieutenants four years after 
leaving the Naval Academy at an average age of twenty- 
four years. But when the lists had become filled, and in 
addition subjected to the reduction in the numbers which 
occurred in 1882, stagnation in promotion resulted. The 
men who entered during the Civil War period being all 
of nearly the same years, there were no age retirements. 
They blocked the stream of promotion and became 
known as the " hump." The twelve seniors of the class 
of 1868 remained in the lieutenant's grade for twenty-one 
years. In 1868 there were lieutenant-commanders whose 
total service in the Navy was less than eight years. In 
1897 there were ensigns whose service period was double 
this. In 1899 most of those belonging to the four classes 
of midshipmen in, the Naval Academy during its last 

256 The United States Naval Academy- 
year in Newport who still survived filled the list of a 
single grade — that of commander. 

The so-called personnel law of 1899, which provided 
for the making of enforced vacancies in the several grades 
yearly, unless they should naturally become reduced to 
■a certain extent, emphasized the final result of the disas- 
trous policy of suddenly and largely augmenting the 
Naval Academy classes under the pressure of emergen- 
cies. Having invited the entrance of the victims in its 
time of trouble, their country at the beginning of the 
new century sees no alternative to terminating peremp- 
torily their active careers after nearly forty years of faith- 
ful service. 

To return, however, to the stormy days of the Civil 
War. There still remained the difficulty that the Acad- 
emy was organized to produce ensigns who were com- 
missioned officers ; and here the strident protests of the 
ancient mariners silenced every other voice. They 
wanted midshipmen. The idea of giving a lad a com- 
mission before he had received (plastically) impressions 
on a cruising ship, they said, was preposterous. Fortune 
helped them; for some of the acting ensigns who had 
been hurriedly taken from the Academy went to sleep on 
watch and did other irregular things for which in the 
winter of 1863-64 they were sent back to the school 
minus their sleeve stripes. Nevertheless, there stood 
the law of 1862 explicitly providing that " the students 
at the Naval Academy shall be styled midshipmen until 
their final graduating examination, when, if successful, 
they shall be commissioned ensigns, ranking according 
to merit." Hardly, indeed, had this been enacted before 


The Return to Annapolis 257 

Commodore Blake had caused an order to be published 
informing the midshipmen that " by this act they become 
commissioned officers in the Navy with a high pay as 
soon as they graduate ' ' ; and an actual precedent had 
been fully established, for the graduating class of 1863 
had received its diplomas and its commissions on the 
same day. 

The authorities in Washington who were carrying on 
the war were not, however, to be hampered by legislation 
in matters which involved military exigencies, and of 
these the active naval officers in high places were, after 
all, the ultimate judges, and their voice had already been 
heard. The Attorney-General became clearly of the 
opinion that the- midshipmen were not entitled to com- 
missions as ensigns until they had passed the final 
examination " directed by the regulations of the Depart- 
ment," and the Department promptly informed the 
Superintendent (June 8, 1864) that hereafter no officer 
will be promoted to the grade of lieutenant until he has 
served one year as master, one as ensign, " and at least 
one as midshipman after leaving the Academy in Novem- 
ber, and until further directions are given the final grad- 
uating examination will not be less than one year after 
leaving the Academy. " The Department overrode the 
law, and the Attorney-General confirmed the legality 
of the proceeding. 

So the midshipmen came back to the fleet^ — learned 
midshipmen in long frock-coats and shoulder-straps — 31 
of them in 1864, increased next year to 84, and in 1867 
to 157. And there they were, clambering up to the top- 
sail-yards with their long coat-tails waving joyously in the 

258 The United States Naval Academy 

breeze, and answering the time-honored call of " gem- 
man-of-the-watch ! " with just as much alacrity as if they 
had never heard of asymptotes or hyperbolas, nor given 
a moment's serious thought to advanced problems in 
squadron tactics under steam. 

Such was Secretary Welles's expedient, which per- 
haps, on the whole, was the wisest possible. The Board 
of Visitors of 1864 had made a disconcerting sort of report 
wherein they wanted to abolish the Naval Academy and 
set up seven different schools, and have competitive 
examinations for them, French-fashion, all over the 
country. Commodore John Marston — the Midshipman 
John Marston who forty odd years before had been 
pounded with a speaking-trumpet by Captain John Orde 
Creighton — was on that Board, but it is hard to believe 
that he — fruity and crusted old Bourbon that he was — 
had anything to do with it. Before the next Board of 
Visitors convened, however. Secretary Welles had carried 
his plan into effect, and that Board came to the Acad- 
emy, with Farragut at its head, and proceeded to recom- 
mend practically what Welles had already proposed. Its 
first suggestion was to raise the standard of admission; 
its second was to require one year's service at sea after 
graduation. The temper of the " Old Navy" comes 
out between the lines of the report of Farragut's Board, 
for despite all its praise of Commodore Blake, who had 
" written over a thousand letters per year to parents," 
and had been an assistant parent himself to the midship- 
men, it mercilessly drags to light the fact that during the 
past twelve years one third of all the candidates for ad- 
mission had been rejected, and that out of the 1209 

The Return to Annapolis 259 

boys who had entered the school, only 269 had been 

Meanwhile a breeze from another quarter had struck 
the Secretary, and he was off on a new tack. Now the 
progressive people and probably Assistant Secretary Fox 
had influenced him, and with that impetus he carried his 
way so far in advance of his time that it has taken the 
Navy thirty-six years to catch up to him. The first 
practice cruise during which the midshipmen were re- 
quired to perform the duty of engine-drivers was that of 
1864, and the steam gunboat Marblehead wd.s attached to 
the squadron for the purpose of such instruction, while 
incidentally chasing the elusive Tallahassee. At the end 
of the cruise the members of the graduating class ex- 
hibited their proficiency, and managed the engines during 
a run of about forty miles in Narragansett Bay. Prob- 
ably this result, together with the arguments of the 
Engineer Corps of the Navy, which had then already 
begun its long struggle for actual instead of relative 
rank, led the Secretary to propose that the Naval Acad- 
emy should produce men qualified to serve both as line 
officers and as engineers. He pointed out that the dis- 
asters during the war due to incompetent and ignorant 
engineers had been serious, and that therefore educated 
engineers were a necessity. On the other hand, if the 
line ofScers and engineers were to be kept separate, every 
vessel would have to carry two sets of officers, one set 
incompetent to drive her, the other incompetent to navi- 
gate her ; that the existing line officers knew nothing of 
steam engineering, while the engineers could not fight 
the guns or maintain discipline. He insisted that 

26o The United States Naval Academy 

seamanship and steam engineering were no more dissimilar 
than seamanship and gunnery, that only a few years 
earlier it was believed that line officers could never learn 
the latter, so that a separate ordnance corps was strenu- 
ously advocated, and he recommended that the midship- 
men be taught steam engineering so thoroughly that after 
graduation they would be competent to stand their 
watches alternately on the deck and in the engine-room. 

This proposition met with scant favor in the line of the 
Navy, while another even more radical suggestion, that 
one half the midshipmen be chosen from the naval ap- 
prentices who should be appointed from the Congres- 
sional districts, leaving the other half to be selected in 
the ordinary way from boys in civil life, received none at 
all. Meanwhile, in May, 1864, Congress put an end to 
the importunities of the advocates of new locations for the 
School by decreeing that the Academy should return to 
Annapolis before October of the following year. An at- 
tempt was then made to have the Naval Academy site 
called Severn Point, to match West Point, but it failed. 

The situation, to say the least, was now much compli- 
cated. With the Secretary himself advocating reforms 
of a subversive character on the one hand, and yet, on 
the other, acting upon the most conservative counsels; 
with the Academy filled almost to the limit with new 
appointees, and its internal organization replete with 
makeshifts and expedients ; with a controversy, moreover, 
rapidly arising in the institution itself as to whether the 
rule of the fixed professors should give way to that of 
line officers temporarily assigned as instructors, — the cir- 
cumstances all pointed to the conclusion that the time 


The Return to Annapolis 261 

had come for the discovery of some strong, commanding 
intellect capable of grappling with the difHculties and 
of devising some new way of effectively overcoming 
them. This is what Welles's acumen in the end revealed 
to him. It is to his lasting credit that he perceived that 
the man of all others who could do it was Rear -Admiral 
David D. Porter. 

Admiral Porter's history had been picturesque. At 
the age of eleven he was on the ship of his father, Cap- 
tain David Porter, chasing buccaneers in the Gulf. When 
the father resigned from the United States Navy and took 
service in that of Mexico, the son, then in his teens, be- 
came a Mexican midshipman, and went cruising after 
Spanish merchant vessels. At barely fourteen years of 
age he fought on the brig Guerrero in her bloody engage- 
ment with the Spanish frigate La Lealtad, was captured 
when the Mexican surrendered and consigned to im- 
prisonment in Cuba. A year later (1829) he was re- 
leased, and then he began anew his naval career, as a 
midshipman in the Navy of the United States. 

The outbreak of the Civil War found him, after thirty- 
two years' service, a lieutenant on shore duty; in a little 
over two years he was a rear-admiral in command of a 
squadron. Now, with a war record of great brilliancy, 
and after the receipt of four votes of thanks from Con- 
gress, he came, in the fall of 1865, to the Naval Academy 
as its Superintendent. 

He was known as a severe disciplinarian, a believer in 
the " smart ship," and yet by no means a martinet. His 
reputation before he reached the admiral's stars was that 
of an especially efficient officer, although he had had no 

262 The United States Naval Academy 

naval commands, except of a coast-survey vessel and of 
the store ship Supply when she made her two voyages to 
Asia Minor in 1854 to get camels and bring them to New 
Orleans, whence they were sent to haul artillery on the 
" Great American Desert." His professional knowledge 
was supplemented, however, by much worldly wisdom, 
gathered perhaps when he was on furlough commanding 
a mail steamer plying between New York and the Isthmus 
during the gold fever in 1849. 

He relieved Commodore Blake as Superintendent in 
September, 1865, and during the summer of that year 
the School returned to Annapolis ; the old Constitution 
distinguishing herself by making thirteen and a half knots 
under sail on her way back to her former moorings in the 
Severn — which was better than she did in 1878, when she 
took thirty days to cross from Delaware Breakwater to 
Havre, perhaps because in the latter case she was dis- 
gusted at being made to carry a cargo for the French 

The condition of the grounds as Porter took them from 
the Army was deplorable. Just before his departure, 
Blake had completed the last of the professors' and 
officers' quarters, now known as Blake Row or " Rascal- 
ity Row," as the youngsters at one time called it.' But 
the buildings were hardly occupied before they were 
turned into hospitals, and the midshipmen's quarters 
shared the same fate. In fact, there was much mis- 
giving in sending the students back into houses in 
which all sorts of disease had been harbored during a 
period of over four years. 

Whatever beauty the place had ever possessed was 


The Return to Annapolis 263 

gone. The long row of willows which had fringed the 
bay side had been eaten by the cavalry horses. Deep- 
rutted wagon roads ran in every direction over the ruined 
lawns. Where once had been flowers and shrubbery now 
was bare earth, with perhaps a clump of rank pasture 
grass here and there. Sheds had been built on the 
parade to serve for beer-rooms and sutlers' shops. Even 
the Superintendent's house had been turned into a 

Porter set a small army of laborers to work, and by 
the time the academic year opened in October, 1865, the 
place was in fair order, and some spots, as around 
the Herndon Monument where the old trees remained 
unhurt, even called up reminiscences of their former 
beauty. To the midshipmen who arrived there from the 
practice cruise or from leave, and who had never seen them 
as they had been, the grounds, although far less spacious 
than at present, were a welcome substitute for the prim 
little Newport square and the dusty desert of Goat 
Island. But they had little time to indulge in compari- 
sons, for jpimediate and important changes were manifest 
on every hand. In fact, whether Admiral Porter could 
have gone any further with his reforms without eliminat- 
ing the whole institution and . starting an entirely new 
one seemed at the time an open question. 

In the Academic staff radical alterations had been 
made. Professors J. H. C. Coffin and J. E. Nourse had 
retired. What was left of the old military rule of the 
professors had practically disappeared, and the direct 
management of the Academy had passed into the hands 
of one of the most brilliant groups of young officers which 

264 The United States Naval Academy 

had ever been assembled under the auspices of the Navy ; 
into the hands of the men who had actively fought the 
battles of the Civil War and who had now returned, 
flushed with the enthusiasms of victory, and ready to 
bend all their energies to teaching the rising generation 
how to go and do likewise. 

Lieutenant-Commander Stephen B. Luce became Com- 
mandant of Midshipmen, and among his assistants were 
many men whose names have since become famous both 
in the service and out of it. The list includes Lieutenant- 
Commanders Kidder R. Breese, James A. Greer, Francis 
M. Ramsay, Richard W. Meade, Thomas O. Self ridge, 
John S. Barnes, Montgomery Sicard, Robert L. Brad- 
ford, Augustus P. Cooke, Henry W. Miller, Norman H. 
Farquhar, and Samuel Dana Greene. Lieutenant-Com- 
mander Robert L. Phythian was at the head of the 
Department of Navigation, with Lieutenant-Commanders 
Leroy Fitch and James O'Kane as assistants. Lieu- 
tenant-Commander J. N. Miller had replaced Professor 
Nourse as head of the Department of Ethics and English. 
Professor William H. Wilcox, who had formerly been a 
lieutenant. in the Navy, had assumed charge of the De- 
partment of Mathematics; while to carry out the new 
plan of teaching the midshipmen steam engineering, a 
department devoted to that subject and all its branches 
had been established, with Chief-Engineer William W. 
W. Wood at its head. Besides these, there were many 
other new instructors, including no less than four chap- 
lains of the Navy ; and to match the new force were new 
text-books and new arrangements of study. 

During the last year of Commodore Blake's administra- 

The Return to Annapolis 265 

tion (1864-65) the Academic staff consisted of seven 
civilian professors (heads of departments), and twenty- 
two civilian assistant professors or instructors. There 
was but one line officer who was head of a department 
(the Commandant), and only nine line officers as instruc- 
tors. During Porter's first year (1865-66) the civilian 
head professors became reduced to five, with twenty 
civilian instructors against four line officers as heads of 
departments and twenty-seven line officers as instructors. 

The military organization of the battalion was com- 
pletely modified. The units were no longer mess crews 
except for the ordinary formations for meals and daily 
inspection. For all purposes of drill, the battalion was 
divided into four divisions, each composed of six guns' 
crews, averaging about twenty men each. The adjutant 
and sub-adjutant had disappeared. The ranking cadet 
officer was now a cadet lieutenant-commander. Each 
division had a cadet lieutenant, a cadet ensign, and a 
cadet midshipman in charge of it. Each guns' crew 
was commanded by a first captain, assisted by a second 
captain. In ordinary formations when mess crew organ- 
ization prevailed, the cadet lieutenant-commander took 
charge of the battalion under the direction of the officer 
in charge, and the mess crews, much larger than formerly, 
were commanded by cadet divisional officers, the first 
and second captains of guns'crews falling into the ranks. 

The marks of cadet rank were entirely changed. At 
first, chevrons of gold lace similar to those worn at West 
Point by the cadet officers were placed upon the sleeves 
of uniform jackets, beginning with one for a second cap- 
tain of a guns' crew and ending with so many for the cadet 

266 The United States Naval Academy 

lieutenant-commander that Porter announced that the 
midshipmen officers wore more gold lace than he did, 
and to that he would not submit. So, after a few days of 
trial, the cadet lieutenant-commander was given four 
quarter-inch gold stripes surmounted by a double dia- 
mond, the cadet lieutenants three stripes, the cadet 
ensigns two, and the cadet midshipmen one ; while the 
first captains of guns' crews wore the double diamond 
only and the second captains a single diamond. The 
last cadet adjutant was Fremont M. Hendrix of the class 
of 1865, now* deceased; and the first cadet lieutenant- 
commander was S. Nicholson Kane, who was graduated 
No. I in the class of 1866, and who is now in civil life. 

The uniform jacket with its broad rolling collar and 
large anchors disappeared. So did the cap with the 
empty wreath. The whole dress lost its air of nautical 
freedom. In place there came a jacket with a military 
standing collar with small gold anchors placed horizon- 
tally at its ends, and with a gold cord around its edge 
for full uniform. The cap lost its ungainly shape, be- 
came smaller and trimmer, and its ornament was changed 
to a single gold anchor. 

Porter recognized that the midshipmen were human 
beings, and young ones at that. The most any of his 
predecessors had done — and it was very little — was to 
permit them a limited amount of sober recreation. 
Porter provided means for all sorts of athletic sports, 
and urged the youngsters to take part in them. He set 
a personal example by using the gymnastic apparatus 
himself, even putting on the boxing-gloves. And when 
the news went out that the Vice-Admiral of the Navy 

The Return to Annapolis 267 

had actually boxed with a midshipman, and, worse yet, had 
done this in the presence of other midshipmen, who had 
manifested unrestrained glee when his exalted nose was 
smartly tapped by his young opponent, an awful shudder 
went through the ancient martinets of bygone days 
which set some of them to calling high heaven to witness 
that the service was now certainly going to the opposite 

There were midshipmen then at the Academy who 
had been disciplined the year before by Blake for daring 
to ask to play cricket in Touro Park. It was hard for 
them to appreciate the full extent of the changes which 
had taken place about them, and that amusements were 
now to be encouraged. Weekly dancing parties, or 
hops, as they were called, were held in the lyceum over 
the mess-hall, which were attended not merely by the 
midshipmen, but by the ladies of Annapolis and of the 
officers* families. The same room was invaded by a 
negro minstrel company formed from the students, and 
before the year was out private theatricals were in full 
blast. The latter were rather primitive, because the 
youngsters had to get up their own dresses and paint 
their own scenery ; but they could not have been more 
■enjoyed if the greatest actors in the world had been 
brought there for the general delectation. 

During the following year the Academy began its 
serious athletic work, which it has ever since continued. 
Rival baseball clubs were organized in the different 
■classes: the " Nautical " of '6^, the " Severn" of '68, 
the "Monitor" of '69, and the " Santee " of '70. 
Saturday afternoons found hard-fought games played on 

268 The United States Naval Academy 

the drill grounds in front of Stribling Row. Rowing 
shells were provided, and even some infractions of routine 
were permitted to the men who had gone into active 
training. A well-appointed gymnasium was fitted up on 
the barbette of old Fort Severn, from which the battery 
had been removed after the Santee was made into a gun- 
nery ship. The infantry drills assumed a much more 
showy character, and dress parade was held every evening 
when the weather permitted. A complete fleet of sailing 
launches was provided in which all the midshipmen were 
embarked and sent out into Chesapeake Bay to practise 
fleet-sailing, and incidentally to have collisions and cap- 
sizes in all sorts and kinds of weather. Even the band, 
which hitherto had been a small, dispirited collection of 
serious individuals attired in coats of ecclesiastical cut, 
turned up with dingy red, and which had a dreadful 
habit of inciting incipient mutiny by its insistence in 
playing some one tune, became under Porter's magic 
touch greatly increased in numbers, and then it burst 
forth into a gorgeous uniform, and, headed by a drum- 
major, swung down before the line on parade in a way 
that aroused the delighted admiration of every youngster 
in the battalion. 


Wherein is Reviewed the Epoch-Making Administration of Ad- 
miral Porter through which the Naval Academy Became 
Changed from a High School to a College and the " Honor" 
Standard firmly Established 

THE attitude of the earlier superintendents to the 
midshipmen was practically that of the old- 
fashioned man-of-war captain to his young offi- 
cers, inasmuch as they regarded the students as boys to 
be kept under strict watch and tutelage at all times. 
Admiral Porter, on the contrary, impressed upon the 
midshipmen that they were not merely gentlemen in 
name, but gentlemen in fact, and that they were to be 
treated as such with the full understanding of all the 
name implied ; and most especially that they should be 
subjected to no espionage save such as their own honor 
imposed upon them. They were told that their words 
would be implicitly accepted as truth ; that they would 
be called upon to do their duty as it was pointed out to 
them, not because military discipline forced them to do 
it, but because such was the honorable and proper course 
in view of the obligations which they were under to the 
Government which was educating and supporting them. 
" If they do not act honorably under the present 

270 The United States Naval Academy 

system," said Porter in one of his early letters to the 
Navy Department, " it is scarcely worth while to expect 
it under any, other." 

The response of the students to this new code was 
loyal and complete, and the high standard of morale 
which Porter then set has since remained characteristic 
of the Naval Academy. 

There were two other causes which contributed power- 
fully, though indirectly, to the success of the new order 
of things. Those familiar with social life at the Academy 
at the present time may find it difficult to realize the 
condition when the feminine influence was directly and 
for the first time exerted upon the students and wel- 
comed' by the disciplinary authorities. But no history 
of the School can properly omit at least passing tribute 
to the civilizing work which was done by that lovely 
group of wives and daughters which came to reside in the 
grounds in 1865. They found the Naval Academy a 
barrack ; they filled it with the gracious fragrance which 
clung about their own homes, and left it with such a 
host of clinging and tender memories that to the gray- 
headed youngster of to-day the thought of them, as he 
returns to the old scenes, is a draught at the fountain of 

And in that formative period, the other cause con- 
tributing always for good lay in the chaplain, the Rev- 
erend George Williamson Smith, now the honored 
President of Trinity College. There were and had been 
other chaplains at the Academy, excellent, well-meaning 
men, all of them, but, as often happens in such cases, 
they perhaps did not quite appreciate the material with 

The Administration of Admiral Porter 271 

which they had to deal. Some with Httle tact had exer- 
cised technical police power. When the Rev. Mr. Smith 
— a quiet, rather diffident young man, totally unpreten- 
tious, and plainly not watching to " spot " midshipmen 
for not saluting him — assumed the office, he was at first 
contemplated dubiously, with a half-defined idea that he 
was developing some new form of what the midshipmen 
called " deviltry peculiar to chaplains," which it would 
be well to look out for. But, on the contrary, he showed 
no such inclination. He preached sermons that were in- 
telligible, and sensible, and good. He interested himself 
in whatever interested the midshipmen. He was never 
sanctimonious, but was simply a pleasant, amiable friend 
to whomsoever chose to go to him. Pretty soon the 
youngsters decided that he was not to be referred to as. 
a " Holy Joe " or a " Sky Pilot " ; and in the end he 
gained the cordial liking of the entire battalion, and 
proved a potent aid to Admiral Porter in the establish- 
ment of the " honor " system. 

The recommendations of the Secretary of the Navy re- 
garding the teaching of steam engineering to the midship- 
men had hitherto not been carried into effect, unless the 
detailing of a few assistant engineers to act as instructors 
in natural and experimental philosophy may be regarded 
as an initial step to that end. Now the establishment of a 
fully equipped department, under the direction of Chief- 
Engineer W. W. W. Wood (an officer whose high rank and 
attainments did not prevent the thoughtless youngsters, 
from condensing-his name to W^O^D), with eight assist- 
ants, and the assignment of a portion of the school time to 
the study of the subject, showed that the effort to render 

2/2 The United States Naval Academy 

line officers versed in the management of steam engines 
was seriously to be made. Nevertheless it failed, and 
among the causes which have been assigned are an 
alleged bitter opposition shown by the older officers of 
the Navy and the unwillingness of the midshipmen to 
apply themselves. The last contention is without force. 
The midshipmen were entirely under the control of 
the authorities, and had no option but to study steam 
engineering, like anything else which they might be 
ordered to study, and obtain the requisite marks, under 
penalty of being found deficient and dismissed. 

On the practice cruise of 1866 they stood fire- and 
engine-room watch, alternating with their deck watch. 
They were no more directly responsible for the disap- 
pointing results of the scheme, as initially carried into 
effect, than they were for the even worse failure of the 
Secretary's plan for filling the Naval Academy from the 
enlisted apprentices. The real reasons which determined 
its ill success were lack of teaching capacity in tHfc 
engineering faculty, and the fact that the status of an 
engineer in the Navy in those days, being different from 
what it afterwards became, something more than the 
mere possession of a commission was necessary to insure 
the necessary deference from the students. Whatever 
the abilities of the individuals ordered to act as instruc- 
tors may have been, it is certain that, with a few excep- 
tions, they did not succeed in winning the interest of the 
midshipmen; and the very fact that there were excep- 
tions goes to show that, with a different personnel, 
other results might perhaps have been achieved. 

It is significant also that the attempt made at the same 

The Administration of Admiral Porter 273 

time and through the same means to educate young men 
at the Naval Academy directly as engineers also failed. 
In July, 1864, Congress authorized the formation of a 
class of " cadet engineers." The first instance of this 
term " cadet " being applied to any young officer in our 
Navy was in the plan proposed by Secretary Bancroft's 
Board of 1845. One other had since occurred in a report 
of the Academic Board of 1848, in which it was recom- 
mended that " the junior class and grade of acting mid- 
shipmen be abolished, and their place be supplied by a 
body of officers to be called 'cadet midshipmen'"; 
a proposal which was not carried into effect. The cadet 
engineers under the law above noted were to be ap- 
pointed by the Secretary of the Navy from the midship- 
men or from civilians, and were not to exceed fifty in all. 
If selected from civil life, they were to have been 
"engaged at least two years in the fabrication of steam 
machines. ' ' None of the midshipmen were chosen. The 
scheme was abundantly advertised about the country, 
and for two years attracted nobody. Finally, two stu- 
dents entered in 1866, and two more in 1867; one re- 
signed shortly after entrance, one died, one became a 
midshipman, and the fourth is still in active service. 

The " cadet engineer " scheme was speedily dropped, 
and persuasive circulars were sent to the various technical 
schools and colleges, with the result that out of fifty 
young men who submitted to competitive examination 
at Annapolis sixteen were appointed — not "cadet 
engineers," but as " third assistant engineers." They 
resided outside of the Academy walls, and had no place 

in its military organization. All of them were graduated 

2/4 The United States Naval Academy 

with credit at the end of a two-year course. Nine re- 
signed within the following five years, and at present 
(1900) six remain in the Navy. 

Fate seemed in the beginning to be against the in- 
struction of the midshipmen in steam engineering. But 
after the " steam building " was erected and equipped 
in 1866 with an excellent marine engine and boilers and 
all the appurtenances of a well-found machine-shop, the 
instinctive Yankee fondness for mechanism began to 
assert itself, and the youngsters came there to investigate 
and study of their own free will. There was one engineer 
officer who recognized this, and it is pleasant to record a 
remembrance of the painstaking care with which Chief- 
Engineer Eben Hoyt would explain and assist, and of 
the engaging personality which won the affections of the 
students, even before his manifest ability secured their 
hearty respect. Admiral Porter and Hoyt had between 
them evolved the idea of fitting up a launch with sails 
and engines as a miniature brig, which the midshipmen 
could handle for themselves, and thus combine study 
with amusement. The boat which Gushing had used in 
his attack on the Albemarle was at the Academy, and 
this was selected. In October, 1867, her preparation was 
completed. Hoyt had taken especial interest in her 
engines, and when the time for the trial trip came, as 
he proposed to manage them himself, he invited the 
Admiral to join him and look after the sails. Porter was 
anxious to go, but a passing illness deterred him. It 
was fortunate that he withdrew, for the boiler of the boat 
exploded, mortally wounding the helmsman, and kiUing 
Hoyt and two seamen instantly. Thus within two years 

The Administration of Admiral Porter 275 

after its establishment, the new department of " steam 
engineering " lost its ablest representative, and the acci- 
dent itself acted as a damper upon the prosecution of its 

Within a year after the abolition of all espionage upon 
them, Porter wrote to the Department that he believed 
the midshipmen to " commit less wrong than any other 
equal number of young men in the country." At the 
same time, however, he was vigorously eliminating the 
black sheep. His first orders to the Commandant and 
Academic Board direct them to " begin the weeding 
process at once," and to " report all those who in their 
estimation will be a discredit to the Academy." The 
reported ones departed ; and the protests of their friends 
and congressmen availed them naught. 

Then he created much astonishment by announcing 
that demerits no longer counted against any one, and were 
merely indications of conduct, because " many would 
have to be dismissed if the demerit system were carried 
out, who are now standing well in their studies and will 
make good officers." But he invented new punishments 
in lieu thereof, the chief of which was " guard duty," 
whereby the victim was made to ' ' work off ' ' his demerits 
by hours of weary pacing of the brick walks around the 
grounds, on Saturday afternoons or during other recrea- 
tion periods. He also for a time established a " night 
patrol," composed of delinquents who were compelled 
to turn out of their beds and make the rounds of the 
yard for three hours during the night. That did not 
work satisfactorily, partly because — as in the old days — 
the youngsters were too sleepy next day to study, and 

276 The United States Naval Academy 

partly because under their general orders to arrest strag- 
glers, they laid in wait for professors visiting in the 
grounds, and locked them up in the guard-house. 

In all its essentials, big and little, the Academy under 
Porter changed from a high school to a college. Except 
in that there were official gulfs maintained for purposes 
of discipline between the several classes, there had never 
been any class feeling in the institution in the collegiate 
sense of the term. But now this arose. The class of 
1867 was the first to designate itself officially by its 
graduating year {'67), and to adopt a class badge and 
class colors. The first publication by the midshipmen 
illustrative of their own life was my own collection of 
sketches, made for the amusement of my classmates, 
which appeared in the spring of 1867 under the name of 
Shakings. It came very near being officially suppressed, 
as in violation of the regulation against publishing in- 
formation about the Academy. Unlike many of the 

class books ' ' which have since been issued by the 
cadets, Shakings was not designed to perpetuate events 
or individuals, but simply to show without caricature 
the actual life of the midshipman during his probation 
period ; and of that life as it was thirty years ago its 
pictures are accurate ones. 

It did not take long for the news of Porter's proceed- 
ings, and especially of an alleged remarkable increase in 
the amount of " high science " taught at the Academy, 
to reach the " Old Navy " ; and the very first Board of 
Visitors came headed by Admiral Dahlgren, and having 
among its members Captains William Walker and Daniel 
Ammen. As one of the last efforts of the ancien regime 

^^"'''' */.'/.•„ ^,,al ^'«^'-»'!-'. 

'j'jiiJ i;jiij.'.i.Ui'.rjij a'-iLA/j' 


'' r///, /////,///// //,y J 1^/,, 



The Administration of Admiral Porter 277 

to impose its now greatly modified views upon the 
Academy course, the report of this Board is especially 
interesting. On the one hand it proposed an increase in 
the relative weights of seamanship, gunnery, naval tac- 
tics, navigation, steam engineering, infantry tactics, fenc- 
ing, drawing, French^ and Spanish ; on the other, it cut 
down the weight of mathematics four fifths, and advo- 
cated the abolition of instruction in astronomy, mechan- 
ics, and physics, moral science, naval, international, and 
constitutional law, and history and composition, save in 
so far as these topics could be taught by " familiar 

The doctrine that the " Old Navy " was opposed to 
the education of the midshipmen in steam engineering is 
amply refuted by this report. On the contrary, the " Old 
Navy " had had such a dismal experience with the 
engineers (chiefly the volunteers) during the war, that it 
was ready to have the midshipmen educated in handling 
steam engines to any extent which would prevent a repe- 
tition of it. Furthermore, the midshipmen had provided 
an object-lesson proving their own capacity in the prem- 
ises. The Swatara had been sent to the West Indies in 
command of Captain W. N. Jeffers, one of the strictest 
disciplinarians in the service, and with but one engineer, 
a number of the graduates of the class of 1865 being as- 
signed to her to perform alternating deck and engine- 
room duty. To remark that these midshipmen did their 
work to the satisfaction of so exacting an officer as was 
Captain Jeffers, who reported glowingly upon it, leaves 
nothing more to be said. 

The recommendations of Admiral Dahlgren's Board 

278 The United States Naval Academy 

were not adopted. Nevertheless the " Old Navy " still 
continued its objections to " high science," by which, in 
fact, it meant the higher mathematics. The Board of 
Visitors of 1868 made an unavailing onslaught on analyti- 
cal and descriptive geometry and the calculus ; indeed, the 
last-named branch seems always to have been especially 
obnoxious. The last remonstrance of the "Old Navy " 
was from the Board of 1871, when the Vice-Admiral 
(Rowan) denounced the graduates as below the standard 
of efificiency as watch officers, and " not likely to im- 
prove " because " the system instead of utilizing the eager 
curiosity and superabundant vitality of boys on ship-board 
confines them to irksome studies and minute rules of 
conduct at an age when they are naturally incapable of 
appreciating its benefits," all of which led to the proposal 
that the youngsters should be sent to sea as midshipmen 
on cruising vessels for a year before entering the School. 

When the Bureau of Navigation of the Navy Depart- 
ment was established in July, 1862, the Academy was 
placed under its supervision. In March, 1867, the Navy 
Department assumed direct care of the Academy, leaving 
the Bureau to conduct only the administrative routine 
and financial management. Two years later all official 
connection with the Bureau terminated ; and this inter- 
ruption continued for about twenty years, when, upon 
the placing of all the personnel of the Navy under the 
jurisdiction of. the Bureau of Navigation, the Naval 
Academy was again returned to its control. 

All of the various drills under Porter were brought to 
a higher degree of efficiency than ever before. In sea- 
manship exercises the work was especially severe and 

The Administration of Admiral Porter 279 

thorough. It became common at the June exhibitions 
for the midshipmen to march on board of the Marion, 
which lay at the wharf with all her sail bent, running rig- 
ging rove and topgallant and royal yards across, and strip 
her of everything down to her tops and stow and label 
all the gear within eighty minutes from the moment the 
word was given to begin. 

Porter even essayed, and for the first time, to establish 
a generous rivalry between the Naval and Military 
Academies. The Savannah, Macedonian, and Dale during 
their summer cruise of 1868 proceeded up the Hudson 
River to West Point, and the midshipmen disembarked 
and drilled at infantry tactics side by side with the cadets. 
The tradition is that the midshipmen surpassed the cadets 
in executing the manual of arms, while the cadets (prob- 
ably from having to look after only land legs and not sea 
ones as well) outdid the midshipmen in marching. 

As mi^ht have been expected, the quarters at Annapo- 
lis, constructed originally to accommodate 180 students 
with a sufficient number of professors, proved at once 
entirely inadequate to meet the needs of the 566 mid- 
shipmen authorized by law, together with the largely 
augmented instruction corps. The fourth class was 
therefore necessarily placed on board the Constitution, 
which was moored to the Academy wharf, but the dis- 
comforts of school-ship existence were greatly lessened 
by the erection of a mess-hall and recitation-rooms on 
the wharf- close beside the vessel. The last class to be 
quartered on the Constitution was that which entered in 
October, 1868. The ship, together with the Santee and 
other school vessels, was then under the immediate 

28o The United States Naval Academy 

command of Lieutenant-Commander George Dewey. 
Three years later the Constitution was removed from An- 
napolis, whither she should be returned and kept as a 
perpetual reminder of her gallant career. 

Admiral Porter lost no time in enlarging the grounds 
and adding to the buildings. In 1866, the old official 
mansion of the governors of Maryland, together with 
the garden, was bought, and four acres of land came 
within the walls. The lower floor of the governor's 
house was reconstructed to receive the library, which was 
transferred to it from the room above the old mess-hall, 
and the upper floor was arranged for offices for the 

In 1867, ten acres of land were bought from St. John's 
College between the college yard and the creek, and, in 
1868, an outlying tract known as Strawberry Hill was 
purchased, a part of which was subsequently converted 
into the Naval Cemetery. During the same year the 
brick chapel at present in existence beside the Command- 
ant's quarters was built, and the old chapel changed into 
a " gunnery room," and filled with models of ordnance 
of all kinds. 

Finally, in 1869, a long brick building, five stories in 
height, and architecturally resembling an ugly factory, 
was erected to the westward of Maryland Avenue. This 
was called the " new quarters," to distinguish it from 
the old buildings on Stribling Row, and it has retained the 
name ever since. On the ground floor are offices, recep- 
tion-rooms, recitation-rooms, and the mess-hall. The 
students' rooms are on the floors above, and the attic and 
basement have been used for various purposes. Each 

The Administration of Admiral Porter 281 

room has been occupied by two cadets, and the Regula- 
tions have always prescribed the furniture and fittings 
with much exactness. At times, this building has sufficed 
for the accommodation of all of the students ; at others, 
when the battalion was large, a class was assigned to the 
old quarters. 

During Admiral Porter's term the law whicTi allowed 
the appointment of two students for every member and 
delegate in Congress, two for the District of Columbia, 
ten from among the sons of ofificers, and three yearly 
from the enlisted boys (the last number being subse- 
quently increased to ten) was changed to limit the totals 
to one for every member or delegate, one for the District 
of Columbia, and ten appointed annually at large. For 
this reason the aggregate number of midshipmen on pro- 
bation diminished, and had fallen to 286 when Porter 
relinquished charge. He left the standard of scholarship 
higher than it had ever been, the discipline far better, 
and through his constant advocacy of athletic sports he 
had brought the youngsters to such a state of bodily 
vigor that the proportion excused from drills for illness 
rarely exceeded two per cent. 

The midshipmen who had been graduated at the end 
of the academic course were distributed throughout the 
regular squadrons. Their pay was increased to $800 per 
year, and their. uniform went through various modifica- 
tions. Under the law of July, 1862, they wore a blue 
coat with the usual buttons, but destitute of any badge 
of rank, and on the cap a silver plain anchor surrounded 
by a gold wreath. A year later, an embroidered star 
was put on their sleeves, and the anchor taken out of the 

282 The United States Naval Academy 

cap ornament. In 1867, the cap device became an eagle 
perched on a horizontal anchor, and the sleeves of the 
coat showed a gold cord surmounted by a star, to which 
were added empty shoulder-straps like those of a second 
lieutenant in the Army. This prevailed for a few weeks, 
and then a silver foul anchor was put on the straps. The 
corresponding full-dress uniform was a jacket with a gold 
cord around the standing collar. This garment, especially 
when worn tightly" buttoned by men with long beards, 
provoked the risibilities of foreign navies. In 1869 there 
was another upheaval, and the full-dress coat was pro- 
vided with the standing laced collar, bearing now a foul 
instead of a plain anchor. Sack coats, with a gold cord 
across the end of the collar, were allowed. In the same 
year, the gold cord shoulder-knot came in, and the cap 
ornament was changed to its present form — shield, eagle, 
and cross anchors, with a gold cord added. The mid- 
shipmen were also permitted when on boat duty to wear 
a short dirk; and that imposing weapon also, when 
dangling from men with big whiskers, added to the 
general gayety of all who saw it. 

The uniform at the Naval Academy meanwhile under- 
went little alteration ; the anchor in 1869 being taken off 
the full-dress jacket, but afterwards replaced. 

The life of the midshipman in the fleet depended 
entirely upon the commander under whom he served. 
If that officer belonged to the old school, he was treated 
no differently from the old midshipmen, nor was any 
allowance made for his greatly increased attainments. 
In fact, there were certain martinets who took evident 
satisfaction in subjecting the graduates to whatever 

The Administration of Admiral Porter 283 

humiliation attended upon their being ordered to do 
childish work. 

The younger captains, on the contrary, sought to 
advance their midshipmen to positions wherein they 
could acquire the practical knowledge that would best 
supplement the Academy course. Engine-room watch 
became a dead letter. It was technically required of the 
graduates, but they ignored it, and no one enforced the 
regulation. The examination for promotion to ensign at 
the end of the year's service was merely perfunctory until 
1869; after that, the classes were sent back yearly to the 
Academy once more to encounter the Academic Board. 

Throughout Admiral Porter's administration officers of 
the line of the Navy, and most of them of the rank of 
lieutenant-commander, continued to constitute the large 
majority of the Academic stafl. 

Never had the discipline been better (hazing was un- 
known), never had the students been more diligent or 
imbued with a higher sense of personal honor and duty, 
and never had the Academy graduated larger or more 
intelligent classes; and all of this was due, and solely 
due, to Porter's wise and excellent government. 

On December i, 1869, his immediate connection with 
the Naval Academy terminated, although during the re- 
mainder of his life it was always the object of his unflag- 
ging interest and fostering care. 


Wherein the Time-Honored Perversity of the Youngster Assumes 
the Form of Hazing the Newcomer, and the Majesty of the 
Law is Invoked to Stop it, with Results not Anticipated; 
and wherein, also. Various other Difficulties, Including the 
Negro Question, Agitate the Academy 

the Monitor in her famous fight with the Merri- 
mac, succeeded Admiral Porter as Superintend- 
ent, and held the office until September 22, 1874. His 
policy was conservative, and there was little for him to 
do but to keep in vigor the impetus which Porter had 

To the waning influence of the " Old Navy " is per- 
haps to be attributed the law of July 15, 1 870, which, in 
some of its provisions, was about the most discouraging 
piece of legislation which had yet been inflicted on the 
junior officers. It changed the status of the students 
from that of midshipmen — which involved a definite rank 
and position in the Navy — to that of " cadet midship- 
men," which was an anomaly, and left it questionable 
whether the incumbent was an officer or not, and indeed 
whether he was in the Navy at all. Not until he had 
passed the graduating examination at the Academy could 


The Hazing and Negro Questions 285 

he receive an appointment as a midshipman, nor could he 
afterwards advance to the grade of ensign until a vacancy 
in the grade occurred. 

Certainly the conditions were bad enough in the old 
days before the School was established ; but then a mid- 
shipman's warrant came at the end of only six months' 
probation, while, furthermore, a passed midshipman was 
eligible to the grade of lieutenant whenever a vacancy 
might present itself. Now a boy entering the Academy 
at, say, seventeen years of age might serve four years as 
a cadet midshipman, then, as some did, after three years 
at sea subsequent to graduation, and at the age of twenty- 
four, rise to the exalted place of midshipman, there to 
wait for another indefinite time for some one on the 
ensign's list to die, resign, or be promoted ; and even, 
after that, he would still be two steps in rank distant 
from a lieutenancy. 

To add to the confusion, the classes, commencing with 
the one which was graduated in 1869, began to return to 
Annapolis piecemeal, and at various times for examina- 
tion. It took eighteen months and four " Boards," each 
composed of different oiificers, to deal with the 1869 
class, and three Boards to examine the class of 1870. 
Despite the plain provisions of the law that the ar- 
rangement of the individuals, which should determine 
their final relative standing in the service, should be by 
merit, as determined by the graduating examination at 
the Academy, the Navy Department proceeded to re- 
arrange them on the basis of this last examination. The 
class of 1871 was thus shuffled anew, and after three 
years' delay the result was chaotic. The individuals of 

286 The United States Naval Academy 

a given class had been to different stations and served in 
different ships, and hence had had the widest variations 
in experience; while the numerous Boards, differing in 
their constituents, followed no fixed standards in deter- 
mining merit. The protests were vigorous, but for the 
time unavailing. And it was not until March, 1873, that 
the probationary period for cadet midshipmen was fixed 
by law at six years, four to be spent at the Academy and 
two at sea, which at least had the advantage of putting a 
limit to the last-named interval. This change took effect 
with the class which entered in the following summer. 

In 1 87 1 a new attempt was made to provide for the 
instruction of engineers. From some fifty or sixty 
candidates who presented themselves for competitive 
examination, sixteen were selected and admitted to the 
Academy as " cadet engineers." The number of cadet 
engineers was then limited by law to fifty, and the course 
of study comprised two academic years. By Act of 
Congress of February 24, 1874, the course of instruction 
was increased to four years instead of two, and the 
number of appointments of cadet engineers was limited 
to twenty-five annually; so that from 1874 onward 
regular classes of cadet engineers yearly entered the 

Their summer cruises were made on small steamers 
provided for that express purpose, which made the round 
of the navy yards and various industrial establishments 
to enable the students to examine machinery and witness 
the processes of manufacture. The first cruise of this 
kind was made in 1872 on the Tallapoosa. 

The reputation of the Naval Academy had now greatly 


The Hazing and Negro Questions 287 

increased. The more progressive representatives of the 
" Old Navy " recognized fully the value of its training. 

" The great advantage which we derive from our Naval 
Academy," said Commodore C. R. P. Rodgers before a repre- 
sentative British naval gathering, " is that our midshipmen 
while at plastic age, between fifteen and twenty, have been 
taught how to study ; and have acquired a habit of analysis 
and investigation which serves them well in after-life. Should 
they have ambition they may go on with a degree of intelli- 
gence and with a success from which the men of my time 
have been debarred by the imperfection of their early train- 
ing. . . . After all, the great object is not so much to 
make midshipmen or young lieutenants, but to make officers 
to command the ships of our Navy, and to make the Navy 
strong and able for the work all navies must do henceforward." 

In further testimony of the value of the Naval Academy 
education, Japan, for the first time endeavoring to estab- 
lish a modern navy, asked to be allowed to send young 
men to the School in order that they might be fitted to 
organize her new fleet. In July, 1868, Congress by joint 
resolution acceded, and Cadet Midshipman Zun Zou 
Matsmulla, entered in 1869, was graduated in due course, 
and became a vice-admiral (now retired) in the Imperial 
Japanese navy. Mr. Koroku Katsu, graduated in 1877, 
died a commander. Mr. Jiro Kunitono, of the same 
class, is a retired captain. Messrs. Yoshitomo Inouye, 
Revichi Serata, '81, and Sotokichi Uriu, '81, are cap- 
tains in active service, the first being aide-de-camp to the 
Emperor; Mr. Sadanori Youchi is a rear-admiral (en- 
gineer) and Superintendent of the Japanese Engineer 
College, and Messrs. Kage Kazu Nire, '91, and Moto- 
hiko Takasaki are lieutenants. Of the fifteen Japanese 

288 The United States Naval Academy 

students admitted to the Naval Academy, six were 
graduated in due course, one is now an undergraduate, 
and the rest were withdrawn by their Government. Of 
the total, nine entered the Japanese navy. 

A new trouble now developed itself among the 
students, and for a considerable period overshadowed 
other questions affecting the welfare of the institution. 
It may fairly be spoken of as a new trouble, because, as 
has already been pointed out, the practice of " hazing " 
the incoming students either by the class which had 
■completed its first year at the Academy or by others had 
never been a fixed custom of the School; although prob- 
ably in every college there has existed since time imme- 
morial a sort of traditional rivalry between the freshman 
and sophomore classes which finds vent in practical 

In the fall of 1871, however, it appears that several 
members of the entering class were roughly handled. 
Complaints poured in on the Navy Department, which 
at once initiated repressive measures. Five of the 
students were expelled immediately, and six more a 
month afterwards. The effect seemed to be to create a 
curious spirit of antagonism. The boys who complained 
of ill treatment on entering were the worst of hazers 
themselves a year later. They betrayed their parents 
and friends into the most illogical positions. At one 
time, the fond father, always piloted by a sympathetic 
congressman, would be besieging the Navy Department 
with complaints of the dreadful treatment to which his 
" child had been subjected by the young brutes in Gov- 
ernment uniform " ; and, within a few months, even before 

The Hazing and Negro Questions 289 

the matter, in due course of red tape, could be officially 
digested, he would be there again with a new set of re- 
criminations because his boy had been " barbarously dis- 
ciplined " for indulging in a " little harmless fun with 
the newcomers." 

As a consequence, the real hazing took place at Wash- 
ington, and the victims were the officials in the Navy 
Department; and, of course, the sympathetic congress- 
men whose lives were made wretched by the incessant 
flow of inconsistent complaints. The legislators finally 
turned on their persecutors, and in June, 1874, enacted 
the so-called " hazing law," which made every form of 
hazing, however trivial or absurd, a court-martial offence. 
It specifically provided for a drum-head court of three 
commissioned officers to investigate and report, rendered 
their recommendation of dismissal final, on the mere ap- 
proval of the Superintendent of the Naval Academy, and 
declared that a student thus dismissed should be forever 
ineligible to reappointment. Thus the individual hazer 
was to be extirpated under the form of a court proced- 
ure ; a doom which could not be averted by appeals to 
Washington, because the Superintendent was made the 
executioner, and he could only follow the finding. In- 
fluence exerted in favor of reinstatement would therefore 
be of no avail in face of the plain prohibition of ,the law. 
The measure was no doubt precipitated by a hazing out- 
break in May, 1874, which resulted in the entire third 
class being deprived of its summer vacation, and the 
ringleaders dismissed. 

That the " hazing law " served its purpose in stopping 

the harrying of the Navy Department and Congress is 


290 The United States Naval Academy 

perhaps true. That to it only is to be ascribed the prac- 
tical disappearance of hazing from the Naval Academy 
during recent years is probably far from true. That it 
did more harm than it did good is undeniable. 

The offence was one with which the Secretary of the 
Navy had ample authority to deal. The enactment of 
the law simply showed that, at the time, he was either 
unwilling or unable to enforce that authority against a 
lot of mischievous boys. If unwilling, there was no need 
to go far afield for the reasbn, — fit resounded in the 
crack of the political lash. If unable, it was a melan- 
choly confession of weakness and incapacity. 

The deleterious effects of the law were manifold. It 
gave to the hazing practice a serious import it had never 
biefore possessed. It excited a dare-devil spirit which 
converted infractions of it ^nto acts of personal heroism 
in the boyish imagination. For a considerable period, 
it made summary courts-martial the order of the day, and 
recalcitrant youngsters, who a dozen years earlier would 
have expiated their offences by confinement on bread 
and water in the guard-room, now devoted hours to 
portentous discussions with "counsel" selected from 
the bar of the whole land in the preparation of their 

Worse than all, it tended to destroy the honor system 
which Porter had established; 'for espionage was resumed 
in order to discover infraction's of the law. It virtually 
required the student to testify against himself and his 
comrades through fear and duress. This aroused in him 
a wayward ingenuity in devising means of prevarication 
and avoidance. If, to save a friend from peremptory 

The Hazing and Negro Questions 291 

dismissal, a lie was necessary, that lie was told ; and none 
knew the fact better than the court that heard it. 

Not that the youngsters deliberately chose a dishonor- 
able course. On the contra'ry, from their point of view, 
they regarded their action as the most honorable possible. 
The victims of hazing would as readily deny its existence 
as the perpetrators themselves. It was only when the 
matter was dealt with in the end, as it should have been 
in the beginning, by the exercise of common sense and 
firmness, and by showing to the boys — who were always 
intelligent, else they would not have been in their places 
— the absurdity and unfairness of the practice, and the 
moral harm that it was inflicting upon themselves, that it 
was first shorn of its dangerous features and then reduced 
to such infrequency and harmlessness as practically to 
cease. But it took a long time to do this, and the period 
of accomplishment was still over a score of years ahead 
of the days which are now under review. 

During Commodore Worden's administration another 
difficulty arose which the Navy, with the experience of 
West Point before it, had long anticipated, and now 
confronted with grave apprehension. The threat to send 
negroes to the Academy had often been made, but never 
fulfilled. Certain representatives in Congress now 
deemed the time ripe for forcing the issues involved, 
and in September, 1872, a young man of African descent 
was appointed and duly qualified. 

He had been employed as a messenger in the office 
of the Secretary of State of the State of South Carolina, 
was nominated by a congressman of his own race from 
that State, and is said to have been educated at the 

292 The United States Naval Academy 

Avery Normal Institute. After a year at the Academy, 
he was found deficient in mathematics and French, and 
resigned in November, 1873. The appointment excited 
a great deal of popular interest. That section of the 
community which has always regarded national schools 
as hotbeds of aristocrats awaited in pleasurable expecta- 
tion some sort of revolt from the Naval Academy which 
they could make the pretext for demagogic attacks. 
Those who were deeply interested in the rapid habilita- 
tion of the colored man in all the rights of a citizen 
looked upon the act with favor as a step in advance, 
although the more judicious were inclined to the opinion 
that it was by no means a timely one. 

Throughout the Navy there was considerable conster- 
nation. It was realized that the problem thus suddenly 
precipitated was one of great gravity. All race and 
political questions aside, the issue was presented of 
whether or not a negro could take his place in the hier- 
archy of a warship and secure not only the necessary 
recognition from his immediate associates, but be able to 
maintain the discipline and enforce the respect incident 
thereto from the crew. 

The conditions which would surround a negro naval 
officer are widely different from those which bear upon 
his brother in the Army. Men are thrown into far closer 
companionship in the restricted quarters of the ward-room 
• of a man-of-war than they are in any army post, and 
there are certain unwritten laws and customs of the naval 
service which may make life therein unbearable to any 
one who, for any reason, may be regarded as personally 
objectionable. Naval regulations may compel undesirable 

The Hazing and Negro Questions 293 

companionships, just as they may attempt to enforce 
proper deference and subordination from inferiors in rank 
and station, but they cannot insure that due respect and 
cheerful obedience without which it is impossible to 
maintain the intricate discipline of a man-of-war. 

The officers and students at the Naval Academy in 
1872 were, however, directly concerned with a practical 
question. They wisely adopted the policy of non-inter- 
ference. The newcomer was neither coddled nor op- 
pressed, but was given a perfectly fair opportunity to 
demonstrate his own capacities; and hfe failed for pre- 
cisely the same reason that some of his white comrades 
failed, — for not coming up to the requisite academic 
standard in two important branches of study. 

Another somewhat picturesque individual — a New 
York newsboy who had been put in the Academy at 
about the same time and by people influenced by not 
wholly dissimilar motives — simultaneously ended his 
career, for like reasons. It is unfortunate that the colored 
cadet was made the victim of one or two indefensible 
personal attacks. But one of them was instigated by a 
Southern cadet of violent race prejudice, who was imme- 
diately dismissed for his part in it ; and the other, which 
occurred after the colored cadet had failed, was, singu- 
larly enough, made by the New York newsboy and some 
individuals whose connection with the Naval Academy 
had already terminated. 

In the following year, 1873, a second colored cadet 
was appointed from South Carolina, and he was found 
deficient and resigned in about six months. The experi- 
ment was tried for the third and last time in 1874, and 

294 The United States Naval Academy 

in this instance the individual was dismissed, in less than 
two months after his arrival, for incorrigibly bad be- 
havior. This sums up the history of the colored race in 
the Naval Academy. 

To Worden, as to the old ante-bellum Superintendents, 
the Academy was his ship and the students were his mid- 
shipmen. For good behavior, as when they gallantly 
fought the fire which broke out in the engineering build- 
ing, he would compliment the youngsters in the warmest 
language; but for delinquencies he would berate the 
battalion very much in the same terms as those which 
the old-time captain used to visit upon the luckless mid- 
shipman of the gig who lost a man by desertion. He. 
stoutly maintained the right of the first class to use to- 
bacco, even when the only officer of full captain's rank 
who ever commanded a practice ship (Jeffers) complained 
that his sense of military propriety was outraged because 
the main-deck of the Constellation " presented to the 
casual visitor the appearance of a lager-beer saloon." 
But, if a junior student ventured to indulge, he had a 
way of sending for him and giving him a severe lecture, 
especially on the enormity of the habit of chewing 
tobacco, during the progress of which discourse and at fre- 
quent intervals he would help himself to large pieces of 
navy plug. 

He did not see why the elder midshipmen should 
not smoke; he did see why they should not climb his 
fruit trees and pilfer his pears ; and when he caught them, 
the gusty vigor of his remarks made the guard-house, 
whither they were instantly consigned, a truly welcome 
shelter. He rather favored little ceremonial observances. 

The Hazing and Negro Questions 295 

The practice of the " star " members of the graduating 
class (men who achieved 85 per cent, of the maximum 
for studies) taking their places, without belts or swords, 
in front of the battalion during the presentation of diplo- 
mas began in his time. 

He was proud of the appearance of his boys when they 
made their first pubHc parade in a great national proces- 
sion — for the battalion went to Washington to attend 
the second inauguration of President Grant ; and his 
wrath was great when nearly half the paraders betook 
themselves, on the following day, to the sick-list with 
severe coughs and colds, because somebody had failed 
to make provision either for their comfort or protection 
during the bitterly inclement weather. 

Worden was not an innovator, and as he was essen- 
tially of the " Old Navy," no doubt he would have been 
entirely at a loss if anybody had suggested that he should 
embark upon any radical reforms. The hazing troubles 
did not get serious until nearly the end of his term, so 
that he was not called upon to administer the new hazing 
law. Very little change was made by him either in the 
buildings or the grounds, saving that the territory known 
as Lockwoodville, in the rear of the cadets' new quarters, 
aggregating about four acres, was purchased. 

It was in 1873, during the administration of Commo- 
dore Worden, that the yacht America was taken away, 
against his protest, from the Naval Academy, to which 
institution she belonged, and sold by George M. Robe- 
son, then Secretary of the Navy. 

After her famous victory whereby she won the Queen's 
Cup at the international yacht race of 185 1, she passed 

296 The United States Naval Academy 

into British ownership, and her name was changed to 
Camilla. In 1861 she appears to have been purchased 
by the Confederate Government for the sum of sixty- 
thousand dollars, for use as a blockade runner; and, as 
was generally believed, for the specific purpose of carry- 
ing Messrs. Mason and Slidell, the Confederate diplomatic 
agents, to England. She was then named the Memphis. 
In the spring of 1862 she was captured, after being 
scuttled, near the mouth of the St. John's River, 
Florida, by Lieutenant Thomas H. Stevens, command- 
ing the U. S. gunboat Ottawa. After being raised and 
repaired, she was used for a brief period as a despatch 
boat for the blockading squadron off Charleston; and 
then she was brought before a prize court at New York, 
condemned, and bought in by the Government for seven 
hundred dollars. It was then stated that her captors re- 
linquished their claims to prize money in her with the 
distinct understanding that she should be presented to 
the Naval Academy and there remain permanently as a 
practice ship for the midshipmen. She was so presented, 
and so used for many years. In 1870 she again came 
into public notice through taking part in the international 
races in New 'York harbor against the English yacht 
Cambria. On June 20, 1873, she was sold, with her 
complete outfit, to one John Cassels, it is said for the 
sum of five thousand dollars, which is reputed to have 
been less than the value of the lead in her hull, and 
about one quarter of the amount which had been spent 
upon her for repairs alone while in the naval service. 
Subsequently, she came into the possession of General 
Benjamin F. Butler, in whose family she still remains. 

The Hazing and Negro Questions 297 

It is a singular fact that no record can to-day be found 
on file in the Navy Department which adds to the fore- 
going information, or which shows any color of authority 
or law for the sale of the America by the Secretary of the 
Navy. In the opinion of many, she is still legally the 
property of the Naval Academy, and should be reclaimed 
by the Government. 



From the author's " Shakings," 1867. 


Wherein we Reach a Period of Naval Decadence which Affected 
the Naval Academy as 'well as every other Part of the Navy, 
and Note how it Militated against the Efforts of Men of 
Great Ability and Discernment 

PERRY RODGERS, the Commandant of Mid- 
shipmen in the eventful days of 1861, relieved 
Commodore Worden as Superintendent on September 
22, 1874. He was a man of the highest professional at- 
tainments and of commanding personality, and the first 
officer to assume charge of the Naval Academy who had 
ever before served therein in a subordinate capacity. 
The lover of coincidences may find some food for thought 
in recognizing the names of Commander Winfield Scott 
Schley and Commander William Thomas Sampson as 
heads respectively of the departments of modern lan- 
guages and of physics and chemistry ; Commander Samp- 
son replacing Professor Lockwood, who now, full of years 
and honors, at last reluctantly retired from the service of 
the School for which he had labored so long and so well. 
Admiral Rodgers's policy was manifest. His ideals were 
of the loftiest. He believed that the youngsters were 
capable of higher attainments than had yet been reached, 


The Academy in Era of Naval Decay 299 

and he proposed now to continue their evolution onward 
and upward from the point to which Porter had carried it. 

But the times were against him. The long period of 
decadence which reduced the naval force of the country 
to a condition little short of contemptible was rapidly 
setting in. Ships were becoming antiquated, and their 
armament obsolete, and even such few vessels as were 
added to the Navy were far below the standards of power 
established by foreign nations. 

To the student at the School, looking forward to a pro- 
fessional career, the prospect was most uninviting. It 
was already possible for him to foresee the long stagnation 
in promotion in the lower grades which afterwards oc- 
curred. He was being taught that the vessels on which 
he was to serve were unfit for fighting purposes, and, 
when he joined one of them, he found himself placed 
over a heterogeneous mob of men of different countries; 
the native element among the crew not being sufficient 
to indicate the nationality of the ship. And the Naval 
Academy was a part of the Navy, affected by the same 
influences which were working for further deterioration. 
In a certain sense, nothing could have been more fortu- 
nate than that at the outset of such an era it should 
have been commanded by a man with ideals as high as 
those which Rodgers cherished. It was inevitable that 
he should not realize them in their fulness, inevitable 
that some measure of disappointment should be in store 
for him; but despite this and despite the demoralizing 
effect of the hazing law working directly against his aims, 
the Academy improved during his stewardship. 

A comparison of the scholastic curriculum as existing 

300 The United States Naval Academy 

in 187s with that of ten years earlier reveals marked ad- 
vancement in standards. The mathematical examination 
in the second class included the differential and integral 
calculus, and the youngster of fifteen was ordered to 
discuss, among a host of other subjects, the mediaeval 
theory of church and empire, ecclesiastical reform under 
Henry VIII., " impassioned prose," and Cardan's rule 
for the solution of cubic equations. , 

The student then, as now, was obliged to attain a 
minimum efficiency of 62^ per cent, in his entire course, 
in default of which he was liable to be found deficient and 
sent home ; or at best turned back to the next following 
class for a second trial a year later, with the practical 
certainty of terminating his naval career if he then failed. 

It was not long before Admiral Rodgers pointed out 
the large percentage of failures then obtaining (more 
than 50 per cent, of the students who entered not being 
graduated), and recommended that new appointees be 
given a year to qualify themselves before actual admis- 
sion to the Academy. This was reinforced, though un- 
availingly, by the further fact that the statistics of the 
entrance examinations for the last six years (1870-1875) 
showed that about 30 per cent, of all candidates had 
been rejected for deficiency in arithmetic and elementary 
English studies. 

Admiral Rodgers's tendency toward higher culture of 
the individual is perhaps sufficiently shown by the estab- 
lishment of elective courses in advanced branches ; a plan 
which astonished the " Old Navy," to whom the idea of 
a midshipman ever doing any more work than he was 
made to do, was unthinkable — and which was ultimately 

The Academy in Era of Naval Decay 301 

abandoned. He enforced the new hazing law stringently. 
Courts - martial were kept busy. The friends of the 
inculpated cadets employed eminent lawyers in their 
defence. Cadet witnesses refused to testify, and com- 
binations were made to suppress evidence. Dismissals 
were followed by the usual setting in motion of political 
influence for reinstatement, and thus the old question 
of both the right and the expediency of direct interfer- 
ence by the Secretary of the Navy with the acts of the 
Academy authorities became raised anew. 

The law already provided that cadet midshipmen found 
deficient at any examination should not be continued in 
the Academy nor in the service unless on the recommenda- 
tion of the Academic Board. Another issue was now 
presented which involved the right of the Board to recom- 
mend a cadet for removal for failure in conduct. For 
flagrant misbehavior by certain cadets the Board advised 
their immediate dismissal. The Secretary of the Navy 
declared that the dereliction amounted to a crime, and 
doubted his power to punish except by sentence of a 
court. Admiral Rodgers at once declared that a " turn- 
ing-point in the success of this great national establish- 
ment has been reached"; that "the Secretaries of the 
Navy since the foundation of the School have not been 
wrong in withdrawing, from unworthy cadets, the privi- 
lege which the Government has given them of proving 
their mental and moral fitness to become ofificers of the 
Navy" ; and submitted the conclusion that the misdeed 
in the present instance demonstrated the unfitness of the 
participants, and justified the Secretary in the withdrawal 
of the privileges bestowed on them. 

302 The United States Naval Academy 

The. Academic Board took a similar position, and with 
even greater emphasis asserted that the Secretary had no 
power to continue midshiprhen at the Academy after it 
had found them deficient, and that it had found the 
offending students deficient in conduct, and recommended 

The immediate result was inconclusive. A year later 
the Secretary surrendered, and announced that the De- 
partment would not interfere with the Academic Board 
except in extraordinary cases, and hoped that differences 
would be avoided and the regulations enforced with the 
necessary strictness, " of which the Superintendent and 
Academic Board will be regarded as more competent 
than the Department to decide." 

To distinguish all of the factors which militated against 
the attainment of Admiral Rodgers's ideals would be diffi- 
cult. His critics say that he aimed at converting a con- 
gress of boys, as fully representative of all parts of the 
country and all sorts of people in it as the legislators who 
nominated them, into a galaxy of Sidneys and Bayards ; 
which is obviously exaggerated. The verdict of some of 
the students of that time is that they were regulated too 
much, and that Rodgers fell into the error, so common 
in the " Old Navy," of inventing punishments to fit 
crimes which rather impaired matters than improved 

One cannot read the "misdemeanor book" of 1877 
without perceiving some color of truth in the last allega- 
tion. It gives a list of not only every possible infraction 
of regulations, but of all the various pranks which a 
youngster can commit, for each one of which the infliction 


The Academy in Era of Naval Decay 303. 

of a definite number of demerits is prescribed. Here are 
some excerpts : 


Bed, pouring water in another cadet's z 

Buttons, pinned on i 

Chair, chalking (for the benefit of the sitter) 2 

Gas fixtures, blowing in (the ancient deviltry of the old- 
sters of the '50's) 2- 

Looking-glass, casting reflections with 2 

Pockets in trousers i 

The intimate acquaintance revealed by this valuable- 
compendium with the details of the various perversities, 
peculiar to the midshipman suggests that the compilers 
of it were reminiscent, if not autobiographical. The 
world had grown wiser, however, since they wore the 
jacket and anchors. The somewhat unexpected effect 
of their effort was that the latter-day youngster thought 
that he had only to make up his mind as to what he 
wanted to do, look in the misdemeanor book and see 
what it would cost, and then, in view of all the provocatory- 
circumstctnces, determine whether it would pay to do it. 

A typical instance when the punishment was devised 
to " fit the crime " occurred on a certain Washington's 
Birthday, when, for some arbitrary reason, as the cadets 
considered, their time-honored privilege of visiting the 
town was revoked. This they resented by flaunting from 
an upper window of the " new quarters " a huge white 
flag bearing the legend " The Sun of Liberty has Set." 

There was at once an investigation, which resulted in 
the arraignment of five woe-begone culprits. A few days- 
on the Santee, or a reasonable modicum of demerits, the 
usual and specified punishments in the circumstances,. 

304 The United States Naval Academy 

would seem to meet all the exigencies of the situation. 
But the following sentence was imposed: i. That the 
flag should be fastened on a long pole and carried by the 
smallest offender. 2. That all the others, wearing cutlass- 
belts and scabbards, but without cutlasses, should form a 
color-guard. 3. That the squad should march around 
the grounds displaying the said flag every Sat-urday dur- 
ing the remainder of the school year. This was scrupu- 
lously carried out, but whether it was calculated to 
dignify punishments in general in the eyes of the average 
bOy of eighteen is a question which I prefer to leave to 
the reader. 

Whether it was the unusual difficulty of the studies, 
or the large proportion of students found deficient, or the 
hazing troubles which cast a rather gloomy shadow on 
the Academy songs and verses of the period, I shall not 
undertake to inquire; but the scrap-books of the time 
abound in mournful, though none the less comical, dit- 
ties, of which the following is a specimen : 

" If you 're waking call me early, call me early, watchman dear, 
For I must bone the Gunnery, the book that costs so dear ; 
It is the dearest book, watchman, I e'er expect to see, 
For Armstrong guns on pages score are much too .rich for me. 

" To-night I saw the sun set; he set and left behind 

His mass and dip and parallax, which I have got to grind, 
And the moon, the lovely moon, watchman, meant nothing 

more to me 
Than longitude and tides, watchman, and likewise apogee. 

Then v/ake and call me early — quite early, watchman dear, 
For I must bone astronomy, with all its kinds of year ; 
I m turning in at once, watchman, to rise at break of day, 
But alas! I'll bilge for all that, when the roses come in May." 

The Academy in Era of Naval Decay 305 

The prospects of promotion before the graduates of the 
School were now growing steadily worse. As the law 
stood, the final graduating examination of the cadet mid- 
shipmen, held at the Naval Academy as each class re- 
turned from its two years' sea service, simply resulted in 
giving them midshipmen's appointments, and then they 
had to await vacancies before they could be advanced to 
the grade of ensign. Their pay, however, in 1877, was 
fixed at $950 per annum for service other than in practice 
ships, and they were permitted to wear the uniform of 
midshipmen without the gold sleeve cord. Thus the un- 
fortunate cadet midshipman, regardless of his years and 
his attainments and his diploma, found himself perform- 
ing the same little round of duties and entrusted with no 
more responsibility than was his grandfather (if he came 
of a navy family) at the age of twelve. He lived in the 
steerage and shared the tin wash-basin with half a dozen 
others, some of them men with wives and offspring, 
jammed his clothes into a pigeon-hole locker, meekly 
stood watch on the forecastle, alternated with the mes- 
senger boys in exercising his highly educated legs to 
carry messages, and occasionally got up at 5 A.M. to take 
the stewards ashore in the market boat. The only ap- 
parent relief that was granted was that favorite congres- 
sional measure of the past, — a limitation in the number 
of presidential appointments, which did not interfere 
with patronage in " the district," and hence was to be 
preferred to any other retrenchment. 

Hitherto these appointments had been ten annually. 
By Act of July 17, 1878, it was provided that there 
shall not be in the Academy at any time more than ten 

3o6 The United States Naval Academy- 
students appointed at large. As this made it necessary 
for the number already at the School to become reduced 
to ten, the President's prerogative, slender at best, was 
suspended for about two years. But the net diminution 
in the members of the entering classes was not great. 

Rear- Admiral Rodgers relinquished the post of Super- 
intendent in July, 1878, and was succeeded by Commo- 
dore Foxhall A. Parker, an officer of achieved reputation 
through his researches in naval history, and who, in fact, 
saw in the Naval Academy a congenial retreat where he 
could prosecute his studies while carrying on duty. He 
revived practical seamanship, — sent all hands to sea, on 
Saturday afternoons, in the Dale, and resumed the ancient 
habit of stripping and re-rigging that much dissected 
ship, — as if old-fashioned sailing vessels had any real part 
in the world's navies even of twenty years ago. This 
was no fault of his. All that Congress or the Navy De- 
partment would give to the Academy for practice pur- 
poses during the school term were such craft as the Dale, 
forty years behind the times, or the monitor Nantucket, 
which was a relic of the Civil War. Parker did the best 
he could with both of them — and really it was something 
of an innovation to get up the rusty anchor of the Nan- 
tucket, and set her firing' her huge old soda-water-bottle 
smooth bores at a target in Chesapeake Bay. 

The youngsters of Parker's time say that only one 
event characterized his reign — and that was a big fire in 
Annapolis, whereto the entire battalion repaired, with all 
the extinguishing apparatus of the institution, and be- 
haved itself so gallantly that the Superintendent, by way 
of reward, restored to the students the privilege of 

, The Academy in Era of Naval Decay 307 

smoking, which Admiral Rodgers had abolished under the 
advice of a Board of Surgeons. This privilege lasted 
until Admiral Rodgers came back again, as Superintend- 
ent, in 1 88 1, and then, in his first general order, he 
revoked it. 

Commodore Parker died during the graduation exer- 
cises of June, 1879, and Rear-Admiral George B. Balch, 
who held the office of Superintendent until June, 1881, 
succeeded him. The period was chiefly marked by the 
increase in difficulty of the academic course — as indi- 
cated by the large number of elective studies which were 
permitted. The fourth class was allowed to proceed 
through algebra, the theory of equations and curve- 
tracing, and the third-class man who had displayed espe- 
cial ability in mathematics might take up the differential 
and integral calculus, with applications to trigonometry 
and to geometry of two dimensions. There were also 
elective courses in advanced physics, analytical mechanics, 
Spanish, and theoretical naval architecture. Those who 
took the elective studies were required to maintain at 
least the regulation standard of excellence in all branches 
— -and a fraction was added to the marking, which was 
sufficient to give the cadets who assumed this additional 
burden, a somewhat higher class rank as a reward for 
their industry. 

To the men who had been educated in " high science" 
under Porter fifteen years before, their course seemed of 
kindergarten simplicity compared with the knowledge 
which the youngster of Balch's time was asked to acquire. 
They indicated their disapproval in various ways : as by 
sending the erudite graduate to the market boats and by 

3o8 The United States Naval Academy 

evolving scrap-book verses of a sarcastic nature, like the 

" Now we 've had quite enough of the antique ideas 
Of those chaps who are nothing but sailors ; 
They were well in their way, but this is the day 
Of Science, Esthetics, and Tailors. 

" Scarce one of all those who with Farragut fought, 
Or with Porter stood fire stout-hearted. 
Is versed in Keramics or Thermo-dynamics, 
So the day of their use has departed." 

Up to this time, the graduates of the Naval Academy 
had been either line officers or engineers. Now (1881) 
one of them. Cadet Engineer Francis T. Bowles, who had 
entered the Academy in 1875, essayed to take advantage 
of the law which provided that those who had been gradu- 
ated with distinction in the mechanical department might 
be immediately appointed assistant naval constructors. 
The corps of naval constructors was then of less import- 
ance than at present, for the era of steel ships had not 
set in, and the duties of the constructors were mainly in 
the direction of the ' ' repairs ' ' to the existing wooden 
vessels. The old naval constructors were not favorable 
to the introduction into their body of such a new and 
disturbing element as graduates of the Naval Academy 
— and probably foresaw that eventually the latter would 
monopolize the corps, as they since have done. Conse- 
quently no one at the time of Bowles's application had 
ever secured an appointment under the law. 

His request, preferred prior to graduation, for an elective 
course in naval architecture, was refused by Superintend- 
ent Parker, who also disapproved a second appeal (made. 

The Academy in Era of Naval Decay 309 

after obtaining his diploma, directly to the Secretary of 
the Navy), to be sent to the Royal Naval College at Green- 
wich, England, in order that he might secure the advan- 
tages of instruction in ship-building which that institution 
ofifered. Nevertheless, Secretary Thompson, under the 
advice of Senators Edmunds of Vermont and Dawes of 
Massachusetts, granted the desired permission, not only 
to Bowles, but to " any friend whom he might select and 
who was eligible"; and, in that way, Cadet Engineer 
Richard Gatewood, of the same class at the Naval Acad- 
emy, came to join him. 

The two young officers were nominally attached to the 
Hagship Trenton, and were given indefinite leave of ab- 
sence from their vessel. The Navy Department did not 
pay for their tuition, nor any of their expenses, nor bestow 
on them the slightest attention. The Treasury, on their 
return, essayed to mulct them the difference between 
their sea pay and the rate of pay allowed to officers on 
leave ; but, ultimately, legislation was secured which re- 
imbursed them for travelling and tuition expenses and 
cost of books. At the end of two years, despite the op- 
position of the older officers of the corps, they were ap- 
pointed assistant naval constructors. Since then, the 
Navy Department has selected two or more graduates of 
the Academy, usually those of highest standing in the 
graduating class, to study abroad yearly ; save for a brief 
period, which will hereafter be noted, when an abortive 
attempt was made to establish a post-graduate course in 
naval construction at Annapolis. The result has been 
highly beneficial to the Navy, and the naval construction 
corps, now wholly recruited from the leading graduates. 

3IO The United States Naval Academy- 
is a body of skilled officers of which the country may 
well be proud. For that state of affairs, the credit, in 
the first instance, is not due to the Navy Department, 
but to Naval Constructor Francis T. Bowles, and the far- 
seeing men who supported his endeavors. 

The cadets went to Washington on the occasion of the 
unveiling of the Farragut Monument, and also of the in- 
auguration of President Garfield, and the President re- 
turned the visit in person in the following June. It was 
the first time that a President of the United States had 
ever addressed the students at the Naval Academy. Mr. 
Garfield's words were characteristically genial, except for 
a singular undertone of sadness as he compared the future 
of the boys before him with what he assumed to be his 
own definitely run cdurse : 

"All of us on this stand," he said, " have our characters 
set. There is no curiosity about our future ; even the angels 
would hardly look down on us from above. Before you the 
future opens out ; the very gods if we lived in mythological 
times would gaze on you with interest — for you have so much 
yet to shape and to build." 

It is said to have been his last public speech before the 
assassin's bullet struck him down. 

Rear-Admiral Rodgers returned to the Superintend- 
ency in June, 1881, to encounter a fresh outbreak of 
troublesome hazing. This was remarkable, since under 
Parker and Balch the practice had involved little more 
than pranks which were ludicrous. There are traditions 
of a menagerie which continued for some time, wherein the 
plebes were required to personate gorillas and various 
other animals in order graphically to illustrate the often 

The Academy in Era of Naval Decay 311 

witty verses wherein the characteristics of each rare beast 
were described by the showman, and which seems indeed 
to have created as much fun for the " victims " as for the 
persecutor; of astonishing enforced debates on unusual 
subjects, in which the earnestness of the debaters was 
kept alive by the zeal of their audience ; and of the drills 
of the "plebemores," in the airiest of costumes, wherein 
brooms and bucket covers were used to illustrate the 
manual of arms. 

But something of the old roughness now showed itself 
— and among the students of a class which had not had 
the advantage of Admiral Rodgersis rule during his former 
incumbency. When forty-eight of its members were 
consigned in a body to imprisonment on the Santee, it got 
a slight taste of the quality of that officer's discipline, and, 
in addition, when a court-martial appeared ready to begin 
its grim deliberations, the entire battalion — excepting 
the first class, which, by custom, never took part in hazing 
— hastened to offer a pledge never to transgress again. 

During the interval between his relinquishment and re- 
sumption of the Superintendency, Admiral Rodgers had 
been in active command of the Pacific Squadron. He 
had therefore had direct experience in the effects of the 
evils attendant on the stagnation in promotion of the 
midshipmen, and he returned to the Academy more 
deeply convinced than ever that the situation demanded 
immediate., relief. So far the only concession had been 
permission to cadet midshipmen after graduation to wear 
a sleeve stripe one eighth inch wide, and midshipmen one 
double that width, which could scarcely be called amel- 
ioration. More than two hundred midshipmen who had 

312 The United States Naval Academy- 
completed the academic course now awaited advance- 
ment to the grade of ensign. Before the graduates of 
1 88 1 was the prospect of eight years of delay at the least. 
The average age of the lowest ten of these young officers 
was twenty-two years. Admiral Rodgers renewed his 
recommendations of four years earlier with even greater 

At last Congress was aroused. On August 5, 1882, an 
act was passed which, among other endeavors, essayed 
to meet two problems at once — the first being to check 
the increasing superfluity of young officers, and the 
second, to quiet the perennial dispute between the line 
officers and the engineers. 

The experiment of graduating cadet engineers from the 
Naval Academy had failed to abate the acerbity of a con- 
flict which had already lasted a quarter of a century, 
which still found its battle-ground in every ward-room of 
the Navy and which was impairing the efficiency of the 
two most important branches of its personnel. So long 
as the higher grades of the engineer officers were filled 
by men who had entered from the engineering profession 
without previous naval training, it was plain that no 
compromise or adjustment of the difficulty was in sight. 
The cadet engineers in the Academy always being segre- 
gated as such, adhered to their own corps, and, on gradu- 
ation, advocated its contentions with youthful ardor. 
The new law essayed to strike at the root of the trouble 
■by abolishing the distinction at the outset between line 
officers and engineers during the academic probationary 
period — and, like most radical measures, went in some 
respects too far. 

The Academy in Era of Naval Decay 313 

A name for the undergraduates which would describe 
all, whether following the purely nautical or the engineer- 
ing course, was thought desirable. To supply it the titles 
of " cadet midshipmen " and " cadet engineers " were 
abolished and the students were all termed alike " naval 
cadets," which name they now have. It is an obvious 
misnomer. "Cadet " is not, and never has been, a navy 
title, but purely an army one in this country. In the 
English navy, the naval cadet has been in existence for 
many years; but he is a little boy, aged about thirteen, 
undergoing preparation in a training-ship for the grade of 
midshipman. To fasten the name upon the young 
officers of our navy during the last two years of their 
course spent at sea has been simply to put them in a false 
position before other navies, where the name of the grade 
is accepted as defining its status by the English standard. 

The act aimed to reduce the overplus of officers by 
means of heroic surgery. It provided that no greater 
number of appointments into the lower commissioned 
grades of the line, the engineer corps and the marine 
corps, should be made in a given year than should be 
necessary to fill the vacancies in those grades which had 
occurred during the year preceding. This, incidentally, 
was the first enactment providing that the officers of the 
marine corps should be graduates of the Naval Academy. 
It was further ordered that the graduates should be ap- 
pointed in the order of merit, as determined by the Aca- 
demic Board after examination at the conclusion of their 
six-years course, and that, in any event, the number of 
appointments should in no case be less than ten each year. 
Then the knife cut in deep. If, in any year, said the 

SH The United States Naval Academy 

law, there should appear a surplus of graduates, beyond 
ten or beyond such as were required to fill the vacancies, 
the naval career of these surplus men should stop — and 
in lieu thereof, and as solace, they should be given a cer- 
tificate of graduation, an honorable discharge, and one 
year's sea pay, as previously provided for cadet midship- 
men — about $950. Any cadet who became entitled to 
remain in the service could have an honorable discharge 
at his own request. 

The new measure took its first eS.ect ex post facto, and, 
with legality since questioned, upon the class which had 
already been graduated in 1881, and which was then dis- 
tributed among the various squadrons, performing its final 
two years' service. Upon the return of its sixty-three 
members for examination to Annapolis, they found but 
twenty-two vacancies open, and forty-one graduates, for 
no fault or failure of their own, were unceremoniously, 
though honorably, discharged. They had, it is true, 
been educated for six years, but they regarded that ad- 
vantage as outweighed by the hardship of being com- 
pelled to start life anew. The country then lost the 
services of some of the ablest men the Naval Academy 
has graduated. 

Through the neglect of the Navy in the past the ships 
had now become reduced both in force and in efficiency. 
The next step was to cut down the list of officers to suit 
the diminished needs of the vanishing fleet. In every 
grade of the line, the numbers, as allowed by law, were 
decreased, and promotions stopped until the aggregate 
should fall below the newly fixed totals. In the engineer 
corps, a gradual reduction was effected by commissioning 

The Academy in Era of Naval Decay 3 1 5 

one officer for every two vacancies occurring. But there 
was no diminution in appointments to the Naval Acad- 
emy. These involved patronage which belonged to 
members of Congress, and they clung to it with a grip 
which knew no weakening. 

In 1883, when 41 graduates were discharged, the enter- 
ing class, numbering 121, was one of the largest that had 
been admitted for several years. In 1885, when 24 
graduates were dropped out, 86 undergraduates were put 
in — and so on continuously. Admiral Rodgers had 
recommended that either the number of cadet appoint- 
ments be largely decreased, or that the examination for 
admission to the second class be rendered competitive, 
and the selection of cadets to be retained in the Navy be 
made then, after they had been in the Academy for two 
years, which would be sufficient time to demonstrate 
their aptitude. Congress rejected this excellent counsel. 
It preferred to stop the flow of promotion in all grades 
and eject the men whom the country had already 

(See page 303.) 


Wherein the Academy Undergoes Many and Radical Changes at 
the Hands of Captain Ramsay — and Incidentally thereto a 
Little Rebellion Occurs which, however, Seems to have been 
a Consequence of the Past Demoralization of the Service, 
rather than the Fault of any one in Particular 

ADMIRAL RODGERS'S second term as Superin- 
tendent was of short duration, as it necessarily 
terminated when he reached the statutory age of 
retirement from active service in November, 1881. He 
was succeeded by Captain Francis M. Ramsay, who had 
already served as an instructor at the Academy during 
Admiral Porter's administration, and who was now the 
first regular graduate of the institution (class of 1856) to 
become its head. He returned with an achieved reputa- 
tion for professional ability, strict discipline, and self- 
abnegating devotion to duty. 

Certainly no Superintendent ever came to the Academy 
with a more definite conception of the reforms which he 
considered necessary, or a more inflexible determination 
to put them into practice. From his point of view, the 
discipline of the School was too lax — not sufificient re- 
liance was placed upon the cadets themselves — the heads 
of the departments of study were exercising too great a 


Captain Ramsay's Reforms 317 

control of the instruction in their several spheres ; and 
beyond all else, — and here the sailor in the new com- 
mander asserted himself, — the School had grown too mili- 
tary, and, in fact, had become more military than naval. 
Then ensued a series of radical changes such as had not 
taken place since Porter's day. 

For the first time in the history of the School, practical 
instruction was systematized and regularly carried on in 
connection with section-room work. Hitherto all such 
education had been known generically as " drills," to be 
arbitrarily varied in kind, in duration, or in occurrence, 
as the Superintendent or Commandant of Cadets might 
order. The various practical exercises were now classi- 
fied, and a definite number of " instructions" in each 
prescribed for the several classes during the academic 
year and summer months. This was put into effect in 
1884. Thirty-seven years earlier, it will be remembered, 
the midshipmen at the School were resenting any practical 
exercises at all — and the authorities were almost apolo- 
gizing for making them take part in infantry drill for half 
an hour on Saturdays. Now, Captain Ramsay established 
forty-one different drills or instructions and prescribed a 
definite number in each for every week in the year. 

In the scholastic course Captain Ramsay carried 
into effect a new principle which was the devotion 
of the first three years of the academic period to sub- 
jects pertaining to general education, and the post- 
ponement of section-room recitations on professional 
subjects until after the students had received sufficient 
practical instruction in such topics to enable them thor- 
oughly to appreciate and understand the matter contained 

3i8 The United States Naval Academy 

in the text-books. Therefore the course tor the first 
class, or senior year, was restricted to purely profes- 
sional branches. A further effect of this was to divide 
the entire six-year probationary term into two periods of 
three years each, the last of which was given to professional 
studies ashore and practical experience afloat. 

The net result was to reduce the number of studies 
pursued at one time to three in the third and fourth 
classes, and to four in the first and second classes. This 
enabled the cadets more thoroughly to understand the 
subjects they were studying, shortened the time required 
for the monthly, semi-annual, and annual examinations, 
and gave them less work to do in order to prepare for 
those ordeals. The relative values of the studies were 
modified by changes in the coefificients, and in addition 
a coefficient was given to conduct nearly equal in mag- 
nitude to that allotted to modern languages. This was 
new, inasmuch as hitherto delinquencies translated into 
demerits appeared only on the debit side of the account. 
Now good behavior became a balancing factor on the 
credit side. 

Freehand drawing, which had been taught at the 
Academy from the outset, disappeared, and mechanical 
drawing took its place. 

Finally the ancient and time-honored practice of turn- 
ing back to the next following class cadets who had 
been found deficient in their studies came to its end. 

Of the purely disciplinary reforms which were effected 
by Captain Ramsay, the principal ones were the establish- 
ment of conduct grades, with privileges and requirements 
for each class in each grade ; the quartering of the cadets 

Captain Ramsay's Reforms 319 

by divisions instead of by classes — the cadet officers, and, 
in their absence, the cadet petty officers, being held re- 
sponsible for the good order and discipline of the 
quarters ; the abolition of the existing system of pledges 
and written permits, and a general re-classification of 
offences and penalties wherein punishments for minor 
delinquencies were reduced, while those for serious dere- 
lictions, and especially those deemed to involve dishonor- 
able conduct, were augmented. Incidentally, the existing 
practice of inflicting extra drills or duties as a punish- 
ment was also done away with. 

That so radical a series of changes could not have been 
put into practice in any organization without more or less 
friction resulting is self-evident. Equally obvious is it, 
also, that resistance to them might be expected from 
those undergraduates who had been longest subject to 
the old regime. This effect became felt in the academic 
year 1 882-1 883. The Act of 1882 had already created 
consternation among the recent graduates of the Acad- 
emy — and this in a measure was communicated to the 
undergraduates. Hence, when the disciplinary changes, 
especially, went into operation, they found the cadets in a 
condition of unrest and dissatisfaction. 

Class privileges had grown up at the Academy almost 
from the beginning, and had hitherto been considered as 
conducive to its discipline. These the establishment of 
the conduct grades and the change in the quartering of 
the cadets tended to abrogate. The result was a condi- 
tion of affairs which temporarily impaired the discipline 
of the Academy. 

At one of the monthly examinations a cadet petty 

320 The United States Naval Academy 

officer of the first class, for a certain grave dereliction, 
was deprived of his cadet rank, the Superintendent's 
order, as usual, being read at dinner formation. 

When the cadets marched out of the dining-room, after 
dinner, and were in the lower hall of the building, the 
■division of which the cadet mentioned had been a cadet 
petty officer, led by the cadet lieutenant commanding it, 
loudly cheered him — a proceeding which those who took 
part in it averred to be in accordance with a custom of 
the Academy. The Superintendent declined to recog- 
nize any such custom, and directed that the cadet lieu- 
tenant be deprived of his cadet rank for insubordinate 
conduct. When the Superintendent's order to that effect 
was published the next day at the dinner formation, it 
was greeted by the cadets with groans and hisses. 

The cadets of the class of 1883 (the first class) were 
immediately quartered on board of the Santee, and all 
privileges of the other cadets were stopped. The cadet 
officers, with the exception of the cadet lieutenant-com- 
mander and one cadet lieutenant, resigned their positions. 
They were sent for by the Commandant of Cadets, who 
carefully explained to them the gravity of the step they 
had taken, and gave them the opportunity of withdraw- 
ing their resignations. They declined to do so. Their 
resignations were not accepted, iaut the officers were re- 
duced to the ranks by order and placed in confinement 
on board of the Santee. New cadet officers and petty 
officers were appointed, and the routine of studies, in- 
structions, and exercises was not interrupted. 

The imprisoned cadets denounced Captain Ramsay's 
action as calculated to " crush every particle of spirit 

Captain Ramsay's Reforms 321 

which a cadet might reasonably be expected to possess," 
and sent vigorous protests to their homes with the result 
that the Navy Department was soon besieged by con- 
gressmen and parents. The Navy Department sustained 
the Superintendent. 

For a time, insubordination at the Academy became 
flagrant. The battalion cheered, groaned, and hissed in 
the ranks, as the mood suited. An order commending 
certain cadets for not taking part in the disturbance was 
received with a shout of ironical laughter. Out of 
twenty-five cadet officers belonging to the first class, 
twenty-one had now been deprived of their rank. As 
confinement on the Santee did not imply absence from 
recitations, they had to march across the entire grounds 
thirteen times a day, going and coming, — thus traversing 
a distance of some seven miles and consuming about 
three hours of time. About one quarter of the entire 
corps was in durance vile. All amusements, saving only 
the officers' hops, were suspended. Members of the 
third class were in charge of the battalion, and the re- 
calcitrant upper-class men were subjected to their orders. 

The storm was temporarily quieted by the tendering 
of apologies by the cadets under punishment, whereupon 
their privileges were restored, but no cadet officer or 
petty officer who had resigned was reinstated in his 
former position. Three of them were dismissed on rec- 
ommendation of the Superintendent because of failure 
to apologize. It is but fair to them to say that ever 
since then they have steadily disputed both the accuracy 
of Captain Ramsay's understanding of their action and 
the justice of the penalty inflicted. 

322 The United States Naval Academy 

The culmination of the trouble came when the class 
of 1883 assembled in the chapel as usual for its grad- 
uating exercises. When the leading honor man of 
the class stepped forward to receive his diploma, in 
accordance with custom the battalion cheered him. 
The plaudits were immediately checked by Captain 
Ramsay, who sharply commanded the whole battalion 
to rise, directed the cadets who had cheered to come 
to the front, placed them under immediate arrest, and 
sent them to imprisonment on the Santee in charge of an 

The chapel was crowded with parents and relatives of 
the cadets, and the scene was a painful one when the 
prisoners were marched past them. The remaining 
diplomas were delivered in funereal silence and the exer- 
cises brought to an end. 

It was then discovered that just before the cadets had 
repaired to the chapel, the Superintendent had been in- 
formed that they intended to humiliate a cadet officer 
who had declined to relinquish his position when the 
others resigned, by remaining silent when he received his 
diploma and by loudly applauding every other cadet in 
the class. To forestall this, the Superintendent, before 
the exercises in the chapel began, verbally ordered that 
no applause should be given. The arrested cadets, how- 
ever, claimed that they had not understood the order, 
and some denied having heard it, and upon proper 
representations to this effect being made to the Superin- 
tendent they were released later in the day. The usual 
June festivities were, however, conspicuously absent, and 
the graduating class, for the first time in the history of 





Captain Ramsay's Reforms 323 

the Academy, refused to give a ball, and solaced itself 
with a banquet at a Washington hotel. 

This is the only instance wherein the cadets of the 
United States Naval Academy have ever been severely 
dealt with for insubordination and virtual mutiny. No 
report of it was made to the Navy Department — except 
in the cases of the three dismissed cadets — by the Super- 
intendent, because he deemed it of importance to demon- 
strate the fact that the head of the Academy has all 
necessary authority to manage the cadets and to meet 
any emergency which may arise — those involving the 
dismissal of a cadet excepted — without invoking the 
superior powers of the Secretary of the Navy. 

It seems altogether probable that the unusual state 
of affairs at the Academy was due in large measure to 
the demoralizing effect of the drastic law of 1882 already 
mentioned, by which the whole professional outlook of 
the cadets was changed, and many of them given nothing 
better to anticipate than dismissal after six years of study 
and service afloat. To these the incentive to effort was 

Beyond this lay the sense of injustice arising from the 
treatment of the members of the class of 1881, on whom 
the ex post facto effect of the law had fallen. Among 
them were men who had regarded their places as so se- 
cure that they had voluntarily, while at the Academy, 
taken the additional burden of elective courses, through 
simple professional zeal; and, for the sake of the addi- 
tional knowledge to be gained, had been contented with 
a lower general standing in their class. Bills were intro- 
duced in Congress to restore these and other discharged 

324 The United States Naval Academy 

graduates to their places. They were howled down by 
the mob of demagogues, headed by " Richelieu Robin- 
son," then in the House; the petitioners were vulgarly 
stigmatized on its floor as " dudes " and " pedants " — 
and the professors of the institution denounced as a 
" snobocracy " leagued to limit its advantages to 

When, furthermore, the provisions of the law were 
held not to apply to the engineers, and the dropped 
graduates of that corps were restored to their places, 
while the former line officers remained still barred out, 
the line and engineer feud grew even more bitter than 

During the practice cruise of 1883, hazing broke out 
again and a court-martial began regular sittings, the pro- 
ceedings of which were a contribution to the humor of 
the land. It was evident from the outset that nobody 
had been maltreated in any way involving peril to life or 
limb. The details of the pranks, as they were developed 
under the corkscrew' of cross-examination, were always 
ludicrous. Try as they might to be becomingly grave, 
the members of the court were in a perpetual state of 
subdued laughter. Had they not been just as guilty 
themselves years before ? Besides, who could be reason- 
ably expected to keep a straight face when trying a half- 
grown boy for compelling, in the early morning, another 
youth, dressed in the airy robes of night, to crawl quietly 
under the table of a room occupied by two senior-class 
men and awake these dignitaries from their slumbers by 
singing " Mary had a little lamb," in a plaintive tone of 
voice ? 

Captain Ramsay's Reforms 325 

But the hazing issue had long since ceased to be 
affected by the peculiarities of individual offences. It 
had broadened into the question, whether the authorities 
could or could not enforce a law of Congress. It is 
necessary to bear this clearly in mind to avoid the natural 
suggestion of " breaking a butterfly." 

After the hazing court-martial had ended its sittings, 
the atmosphere of the School became comparatively 
serene. The social side of Academy existence resumed 
its normal state, and when the class of 1884 came up for 
its diplomas, the Superintendent so far from checking 
applause smilingly permitted it, and pronounced a grace- 
ful little eulogy on the graduates which sent them home 

Among the minor changes made during Captain Ram- 
say's term were the abolition of engineer cadet officers, 
and the alteration in title of the cadet petty officers from 
first and second captains of guns' crews to cadet petty 
officers of the first and second class. At the same time, 
the sleeve badges of the latter were changed, the object 
being to conform the organization of the Naval Academy 
divisions more closely to that of the actual gun divisions 
of a man-of-war crew. Many improvements were made 
about the grounds and buildings^ — the most important of 
which was the demolition of the Superintendent's house, 
which had stood since 1720. 

Even above the plaint of the graduates legislated out 
of service now arose that of the earlier classes who, un- 
affected directly by the new law, still remained midship- 
men. Their comrades of the engineer and marine corps 
had become commissioned officers — but they had received 

326 The United States Naval Academy 

merely the appointment and much inferior salary 
of the lowest line grade. In vain Captain Ramsay 
pointed out this discrepancy; Congress replied with 
dead sea fruit. It changed the name of " midship- 
man " to " junior ensign," with the same rank and pay 
as provided for midshipmen. The time-honored title 
of midshipman had already disappeared from the 
Naval Academy; it now vanished wholly from the 

A year later (1884) this act was repealed and the line 
graduate upon final examination advanced at once to the 
full rank of ensign. The only ofificers left to do the duty 
of midshipmen on our warships then became (as they 
are now) the naval cadets serving the last two years of 
their probationary course. They blossomed out in a new 
uniform with a gold foul anchor on their collars, shoulder- 
knots, and a quarter-inch gold-lace stripe on their sleeves 
similar to that worn by ensigns twenty years before. 

In March, 1885, there died, while still holding the post 
of assistant librarian, and in his eighty-second year, 
Mr. Thomas Karney. Every college has at some epoch 
of its existence, among its teachers, a character, quaint, ■ 
odd, amusing, almost always lovable. Such was " Tom 
Karney." Just how he ever got into the corps of in- 
structors I have not been able to discover. It was in the 
"fifties" some time — and he was then well along toward 
middle age. He had been graduated from St. John's 
College, Annapolis, of which city he was a native, and 
was the honor man of his class. His first connection 
with the Navy was as clerk to the local pay agent, then, 
somehow, he became an assistant professQr of ethics 


Captain Ramsay's Reforms 327 

and English studies for about a quarter of a century, 
and after that he was made assistant librarian. 

His deportment was modelled on the finest examples 
of the old school. He took snuff with the air of a beau 
of Queen Anne's time, and his little diversions amid the 
wayside flowers of English literature deserved a better 
audience than the last, or "wooden," section in rhetoric, 
history, or grammar, which too often was assigned to 
his ministrations. He had a liappy touch of deafness 
which secluded him sufficiently within himself for the 
enjoyment of his own fancies, and a way of relapsing into 
light revery, especially when a line of verse or a chance 
felicity in phrase established a train of thought which 
pleased him — and of that, alas! his thoughtless pupils 
were occasionally wont to take base advantage by making 
sotto voce remarks of a ribald nature, and surreptitiously 
consulting text -books for unlawful aid. Yet that very 
proceeding frequently accounted for their persistence in 
their places at the tail of the class, for the old gentleman 
had a way of suddenly coming out of his dream country 
without mentioning either his intention in the premises 
or ever afterwards informing anybody when he had done 
so. And as a consequence, the graceless youngsters, 
when the averages were posted at the end of the month, 
found themselves confronted with an unexpected and 
ghastly array of zeros and 1.5s, and "Tom" had a 
new reason for chuckling quietly behind his flowing 
whiskers and ceremoniously bestowing upon himself an 
extra-satisfying pinch of snuff. But at last the time came 
when he could no longer govern the sharp-witted boys 
from the vantage of no man's land. A comfortable chair 

328 The United States Naval Academy 

in the library, amid his beloved books, was then placed 
for him — and there he gently dreamed away the life 
which no graduate of the School can say had been with- 
out good use, nor from which any would withhold the 
tribute of a pleasant and even a tender recollection. 

Captain Ramsay's efforts to induce Congress to im- 
prove the status of the graduates met with little success, 
and the recommendations of Board after Board of Visitors 
passed equally unheeded. When the prohibition wave 
swept over the country in 1886, the national legislature 
passed a law directing instruction in " the nature of alco- 
holic drinks and narcotics " to be given in both of the 
Government schools; and, a little later, sternly forbade 
that any part of the appropriation for the expenses of the 
Board of Visitors should be used to pay for intoxicating 
liquors. " Splicing the main-brace " was now, indeed, 
over; the " grog tub" and its accompanying " tots" 
had long ago betaken themselves to museums of naval 
antiquities, and as for " bumbo "and all the queer navy 
compounds of Uncle Sam's long-stored rum and whiskey 
with which the fine old warriors of '04 and '12 used 
to regale themselves — the service was hereafter to 
remember them only through their injurious effects. 

A department of physiology was established under the 
direction of the surgeon and a smattering of elementary 
medical information imparted. In the beginning this 
study was given a coefficient and figured on the merit 
roll, but in 1891 it was abandoned, and lectures on the 
subject of narcotics substituted. 

In September, 1886, Captain Ramsay relinquished the 
office of Superintendent. His administration of the 

Captain Ramsay's Reforms 329 

Academy in epoch-making quality stands second only to 
that of Admiral Porter. In some respects, it was even 
more revolutionary, for it must be remembered that 
many of Porter's reforms — notably those in the direction 
of what he called " high science," were undertaken more 
in reliance upon the opinions of others than upon definite 
convictions of his own. In Porter, however, the personal 
equation predominated, and the personalities of other 
people were always factors in his dealings with them. 
With Ramsay, the personal equation was eliminated. 
He never seemed to consider it in dealing with any one, — 
even with himself, — and his convictions were original. 

In the nature of things it was hardly possible that he 
could both reconstruct the mechanism committed to him 
and leave it accurately operating in every feature within 
the limited period of five years. The unavoidable an- 
tagonisms incident to, and indeed created by, all radical 
reforms would alone be sufficient to prevent this; and 
when the other circumstances which united to exacerbate 
the opposition to his measures are considered, the degree 
of completeness of general success which he achieved not 
only disarms criticism based on matters of detail, but 
compels admiration. 


Wherein we Review the Administration of Commander William 
T. Sampson, Observe the Effect upon the Academy of that 
same Calm Certainty of Plan and Action which afterwards 
Disposed of the Spaniard at Santiago, Note the Rise of 
Athletics, and Finally Sum up the Accomplishments of the 

following Superintendent, was probably the man 
of all others in the Navy possessed of the judg- 
ment, knowledge, and patience necessary to discern the 
good which had been accomplished, and to conserve it. 
If Captain Ramsay's administration was epochal in the 
history of the Academy, because of the reforms that 
were proposed and started. Commander Sampson's was 
of equal importance for the difficulties which were re- 
moved, and for the placing of the institution so exactly 
in the road of progress that it has never since varied 

Commander Sampson was the first officer of his grade 
to be appointed to the position since Commander Golds- 
borough. No one had ever come to the office with 
qualifications depending upon so long and varied an 
experience in academic work. His earliest appointment 
to the School was in 1862; when, at twenty -three years 


Latter-Day History 331 

of age, as a young lieutenant, he drilled the midshipmen 
on the windy plain of Goat Island, and taught gunnery. 
He returned again in 1867 as an assistant to Professor 
Lockwood, and in 1869 succeeded Lockwodd as the 
head of the Department of Natural and Experimental 
Philosophy. He came back again in 1874, to preside 
over the Department of Physics. His total period of 
service at the Academy as an instructor or chief professor 
had aggregated nearly ten years. The School had now 
come under the sway not merely of one of its alumni — 
for Captain Ramsay was that — but of one who had de- 
voted to its service nearly one third of his entire naval 
career since he had been graduated at the head of his 

Throughout the four years of its history which now 
followed, one looks in vain for those sharply defined 
changes in the conduct of the School which were so char- 
acteristic of Ramsay and Porter. That changes did go 
on is indisputable ; but the results were gained so quietly, 
so certainly, that the general effect of them can only be 
likened to that which adjustment by a skilful mechanic 
and engineer exerts upon a complicated machine which 
runs well but not perfectly. 

Commander Sampson's first report is notable in that it 
is devoted exclusively to extraneous matters. In it he 
strongly advocated the limitation of the probationary 
course to four years, as originally established, and the 
selection of the cadets for the line and engineers respec- 
tively after three years of study at the Academy. He 
revised the conduct grades so as to divorce studies from 
conduct completely, and to base the grant of privileges 

332 The United States Naval Academy 

to a cadet for a given month solely upon his actual be- 
havior during the preceding month. He insisted that a 
practice ship to be of value should not be an obsolete 
sailing ship or antiquated steamer, but a steam cruiser 
with every appurtenance of the latest model and design. 

His discipline was unbending. He announced that 
while no cruel or degrading instance of hazing had taken 
place for a long time, nevertheless he proposed to bring 
every case of hazing, no matter how trivial, to trial under 
the law. Possibly he was putting into effect General 
Grant's maxim, that the best way to repeal an obnoxious 
law is rigidly to enforce it. The yearling youngsters had 
heard of similar threats before, and, evidently concluding 
that the practice cruise would supply a good opportunity 
for testing them, proceeded to play pranks on the plebes 
who joined the Constellation, then at New London. In- 
stantly the Constellation was ordered back to Annapolis. 
The practice cruise was stopped ; and the court-martial's 
crop that time was nine offenders condemned to sum- 
mary dismissal. 

The conditions, however, were peculiar. The acts for 
which the cadets had been convicted were in themselves 
harmless and silly ; certainly without menace to life and 
limb. In view of this, the President of the United 
States now interfered. He saw that the law as framed, 
which made the Superintendent of the Naval Academy 
the final arbiter of the fate of a citizen after judicial 
sentence, virtually deprived the Executive of his preroga- 
tive of pardon. He diplomatically refrained from formu- 
lating an issue, but, ignoring the mandatory provision of 
the law, set aside the sentence of dismissal, and substituted 

Latter-Day History 333 

a brief term of confinement on the Santee, together with 
a lecture to the culprits on their insubordination. 

Events were now beginning to remove many of the 
disheartening features of the young ofificer's outlook. 
The United States Supreme Court (April, 1888) held 
that time spent at the Naval Academy was to be counted 
by ofificers in computing longevity pay; and followed 
that decision by another which affirmed that a student 
at the Naval Academy during his probationary period of 
six years is an officer of the Navy. This settled a long- 
vexed question, and effectually disposed of the conten- 
tions that the naval cadet is merely in a state of pupilage, 
that he is not in the Navy, but merely preparing to enter 
it, and that his pay is not pay but gratuity. 

The working of the School was now that of a well- 
timed piece of machinery. The studies had been changed 
in minor detail here and there — with mathematics gradu- 
ally becoming more and more in the ascendant. The 
drills afloat began to be more specialized. Every Satur- 
day the steamer Wyoming started on a cruise in the 
Chesapeake; every afternoon found the little steamer 
Standish running out into the bay for target practice, 
and occasionally the ancient vaomVor Passaic would wake 
the echoes of the low Maryland shores with the thunders 
of the 1 5 -inch smoothbores which once had battered the 
face of Sumter. Then the mosquito fleet of steam 
launches and pulling boats was organized for drill in 
naval and torpedo tactics. 

One class — the second — was usually retained at the 
Academy during the summer months, and kept at prac- 
tice exercise. The other three classes embarked on the 

334 The United States Naval Academy 

old Constellation, and sailed hither and thither between 
the capes of Delaware and Portsmouth, N. H. The only 
cruise of the period which had much incident about it 
was that of 1889, when the venerable ship went ashore in 
a fog about a mile from Cape Henry Lighthouse. Affairs 
were critical for a short time, as the sea was heavy and 
wind strong, but a change of weather and the advent of 
a steam wrecking tug soon removed all apprehension, 
and the vessel was safely towed into Norfolk. There it 
was found that her injuries were sufficiently severe to 
bring the cruise to an unexpected end. Whereupon the 
two upper classes, much to their satisfaction, were given 
leave to go home, and the fourth class sent back to 
Annapolis to resume the delights of squad drill. 

In 1889, the Academy grounds were increased by some 
fifteen acres adjoining College Creek, the water front 
being thereby augmented to nearly a mile. In March of 
the same year, Commander Sampson's long and persistent 
efforts to specialize the studies of the line and engineer 
cadets at the end of the third year were crowned with 
success. Congress enacted his recommendations into 
law, and directed the Academic Board yearly to separate 
the senior class into two divisions, and to assign them to 
different courses of study especially suited to the two 
branches of the service. It also kept the line and 
engineer cadets separate during their following two years 
at sea. Another provision fixed the number of graduates 
to be appointed annually to the line of the Navy as not 
less than twelve, to the engineer corps not less than 
two, and to the marine corps not less than one; and 
finally the law made the minimum age of admission of 

Latter-Day History 335 

cadets to the Academy fifteen years instead of fourteen, 
and the maximum age twenty years instead of eighteen. 

When Commander Sampson's tour of duty at the 
Naval Academy ended, there remained little for any one 
else to do, save to keep the standard of efficiency unim- 
paired. For this reason, the records of the School 
during the administration of the able officers who have 
succeeded him as Superintendent are comparatively un- 

His immediate successor was Captain Robert L. 
Phythian, an officer of recognized scientific attainments, 
who had presided over the Department of Navigation in. 
the Academy for five years, and more recently had com- 
pleted highly creditable service as Superintendent of the 
Naval Observatory. No better compliment could have 
been paid by Captain Phythian to his predecessor than 
his statement, in his first report, that he could find no^ 
changes to make. His policy was therefore conservative. 
He believed in granting to the cadets all possible privi- 
leges which were consistent with the regulations, and 
imposing no restrictions inconsistent with them ; and, in 
taking advantage of the smooth-running discipline and 
scholastic work, to cultivate more highly the social 
amenities of academic life. Captain Phythian 's best 
service to the Academy lay in his clear recognition of the- 
impaired morale of the cadets brought about by the 
action of the hazing law ; and this he made it his cardinal 
object to improve. His methods were simple and kindly. 
They involved mainly appeals to the sense of fairness of 
the boys, and the ingenious submission of their own con- 
duct to their own judgment from points of view which 

33^ The United States Naval Academy 

could lead them to but one conclusion. They were 
extremely effective. They apparently worked better to 
restore the healthy moral tone of the institution and to 
discountenance mischievous hazing than all the drastic 
measures which had hitherto been devised. 

As may well be imagined, while the unsettled period 
in the history of the Academy prevailed, all amusements 
and recreations were more or less desultory. There was 
no systematic athletic work, and, as a consequence, a 
falling off in the physical condition of the cadets became 
marked, until in 1887 this became so noticeable as to 
attract the attention of the alumni at their yearly gather- 
ing in June. This resulted in the first active interest 
taken in the affairs of the Naval Academy by its graduates 
in civil life, and practically the first assertion by that 
body of its own existence, and of its correlation to the 
great mass of college graduates throughout the land. 
The pioneer was Mr. Robert M. Thompson, of the class 
of 1868, and in a speech delivered at the alumni gather- 
ing of 1890 he pointed out that the object of the Naval 
Academy was not to turn out a mere scholar, but a fight- 
ing officer, and that, however valuable scholastic attain- 
ments might be, all would be useless if, at the crucial 
moment of conflict, nerves and body failed. This was a 
new doctrine at the Naval Academy for the time; but 
Thompson was only enforcing what he himself had 
learned as a midshipman in the days of Porter. And 
the time was the best which could have been chosen. 
The Superintendent and the Commandant of Cadets 
both supported Mr. Thompson's suggestions, and an as- 
sociation for the promotion of athletics in the Academy 

Latter-Day History 337 

was formed, which has since existed in full vigor. Row- 
ing, which had become almost obsolete, became revived 
in 1893, mainly through the effprts of Naval Cadet Win- 
ston Churchill, who succeeded in getting. leave of absence 
to go to Yale College to watch the stroke of the boats' 
crews, and came back with an amount of knowledge and 
enthusiasm which could not but prove contagious. 
Within a year, the cadets were once more rowing races 
on the Severn. 

Football has, however, been the favorite of all sports, 
and almost immediately after the athletic revival the 
naval cadets met their natural antagonists — the West 
Pointers — on the gridiron field. On Thanksgiving Day 
of 1890 the Naval Academy team went to the Military 
Academy, the first journey of the kind ever permitted to 
the students of either national school, and won the game 
over their military brethren by a score of 24 to o. A 
year later they were in turn vanquished on their own 
grounds by the military cadets by a score of 32 to 16. 
These intercollegiate games continued during 1893 and 
1894, the Army being overcome on both occasions. 
They were then prohibited by the agreement of the Sec- 
retaries of War and of the Navy, because of a supposed 
deleterious influence upon the class standing of the par- 
ticipants and the discipline of the academies— contentions 
which never had any substantial foundation either in 
statistics or otherwise. The bar was removed in 1899, 
and then, for the first time since 1868, the two battahons 
met one another, and, for the first time in the history of 
the schools, all of the undergraduates were transported 
to an intermediate point — Philadelphia — in order that 

33^ The United States Naval Academy 

they might witness the struggle of the contending teams, 
which ended in a victory for West Point. 

The remembrance of the initial games is rather one of 
sadness than of pleasure. Cadet Dennis M. Michie — who 
covered himself with glory — gave his young life to his 
country at Santiago, and Naval Cadet Worth Bagley, who 
played in the second game, and whose honors in the con- 
test were overtopped only by those of Michie, was the one 
line officer of our Navy killed during the Spanish War. 

Mainly through the efforts of Mr. Thompson, other 
forms of athletic sports were vigorously supported. He 
offered prizes and badges to the fencers, and instituted 
intercollegiate matches with Harvard and Columbia. He 
presented the Academy with a silver loving cup, whereon 
is inscribed yearly the name of the cadet most eminent 
in athletics. 

In 1894, the efforts long made to secure a properly 
equipped practice vessel for the naval cadets seemed to 
be at last crowned with success; for the United States 
ship Bancroft, especially built for the purpose, then 
joined the Academy practice fleet. She was a barkentine- 
rigged steamer, 189 feet 6 inches in length, and of 32 feet 
beam, capable of making fourteen knots under steam, and 
for her size provided with an unusually powerful battery 
of 4-inch rapid-fire guns. Unfortunately, she failed to 
realize expectations, for although she was in many 
respects a powerful cruiser in miniature, her accommoda- 
tions were of too limited a character, and her dimensions 
too small to render her suitable for a practice ship. She 
was therefore withdrawn from the Naval Academy in 
1896 and assigned to ordinary service. 

Latter-Day History 339 

Captain Phythian was succeeded as Superintendent in 
November, 1894, by Captain Philip H. Cooper, who be- 
longed to the class which entered in i860, and was 
ordered to active duty during the Civil War (May, 1863). 
He had been twice an instructor in seamanship at the 
Academy. The discipline became more strict, and a 
determined effort was made by Captain Cooper to divert 
the athletic energies of the cadets to the water, which, 
he cogently urged, was their natural element. He 
largely augmented the fleet of small boats, and encour- 
aged proficiency in the handling of them. He also per- 
sistently pleaded for a new practice ship in place of the 
Bancroft. The most important event in Captain Cooper's 
administration was the inception of the rebuilding of 
the Academy, the description of which is reserved for a 
following chapter. 

The outbreak of the Spanish War found the Navy with 
a scant supply of junior officers, the legitimate result of 
the discharges of competent graduates due to the ill- 
considered Act of 1882. The experience of the Civil 
War was then repeated in the calling of volunteers into 
the Navy and in the immediate detachment of the senior 
class from the Naval Academy. There were no graduating 
ceremonies. The cadets were burning to get away, and 
one day in April at dinner formation their diplomas were 
handed to them, and they left for the fleet as fast as the 
trains southward could carry them. A month later, the 
entire class of 1899 begged to be permitted to join their 
seniors; and on the request being granted, they with 
equal delight departed. This left only the third and 
fourth classes. It was considered inadvisable to attempt 

34° The United States Naval Academy 

any practice cruise, so these younger members of the 
corps were given leave to spend the summer at home. 
They promptly objected, and pleaded to be sent to the 
front, and in the end forty-six cadets of the class of 1900 
and twenty-nine of the class of 1901 received the coveted 
permission. So there was practically the entire battalion 
afloat and in face of the enemy ; and for the second time 
the Naval Academy showed that, however theoretical her 
teaching might be, her undergraduates stood competent 
to undertake active service whenever called upon. 

The work these boys did in the fleet was invaluable. 
They shrank from no hardship or danger; to the latter 
they seemed indifferent. It was one of them whom the 
captain of the Iowa found calmly sitting on top of the 
forward turret while the ship was under fire, engaged in 
taking snap shots with his camera, and whom he ordered 
into cover as soon as his astonishment enabled him to 
select appropriately vigorous words. None were hurt, 
saving Naval Cadet Boardman, of the class of 1900, who 
was killed by the accidental discharge of a revolver. 

The chief distinction won by a naval cadet in the war 
was that achieved by Naval Cadet Joseph W. Powell, of 
the class of 1897. In one of the ship's launches he fol- 
lowed the Merrimac into the harbor of Santiago under 
the fearful fire of the batteries, and despite the imminent 
peril of his proximity to the enemy's works, sought for 
her survivors all night after she was sunk. It was a most 
gallant action, and his commission as ensign, which was 
given to him at once, was richly earned. But he after- 
wards chose his career among the naval constructors; and 
then, because his advancement had placed him above two 

Latter-Day History 341 

of his classmates, originally his seniors, who had made a 
similar choice, he generously asked to be put back below 
them again ; and his request was granted. 

In the Philippine War no braver action has been 
chronicled than the defence of the gunboat Urdaneta by 
her commander, Naval Cadet Welborn C. Wood, of the 
class of 1899. He was attacked suddenly by the insur- 
gents, but he kept his men to their guns, serving a Nor- 
denfeldt himself until he fell. After it was thought that 
he was dead, he revived, and lifting himself on his arm 
with his life-blood ebbing away, coolly gave directions 
for the continuance of the fight. Nor were the survivors 
of his crew captured until he had at last succumbed and 
his boat had drifted helplessly aground. That defence 
was worthy of the traditions of the Navy, and leaves the 
name of Naval Cadet Wood beside those of the gallant 
youngsters who earned their glory under Preble and the 
heroes of the war of 1812. 

For two months during the war the Naval Academy 
buildings were the place of confinement of the captured 
officers of Admiral Cervera's fleet. They lived in the 
old quarters and in some of the houses in Buchanan Row, 
were under little restriction, and, after their first gloom 
had worn off, they danced and flirted and bicycled and 
enjoyed themselves generally in a manner about as far 
removed from that of the traditional prisoner-of-war as 
can well be imagined. 

In July, 1898, Captain Cooper relinquished charge of 
the Academy to Rear-Admiral Frederick V. McNair, 
of the class of 1857, an officer of long experience at 
the School, and a former Commandant of Cadets. In 

342 The United States Naval Academy 

the fall, as usual, the youngsters of the third and 
fourth classes, now that the war was over, came trooping 
back — veterans. The second class had been graduated ; 
so that during the year 1898-99 the new second class 
became the senior, and there was no graduating class in 
the following June. 

In May, 1899, the so-called Personnel Bill for the 
reorganization of the Navy became a law. The corps of 
engineers; which had existed since 1842, became abol- 
ished, and its members amalgamated with the line. 

Naturally, this has resulted in material changes in the 
course of study, for the especial features of the engineer's 
curriculum are no longer necessary; but as these modifi- 
cations are tentative, it is needless to record them in 
detail. For two years an attempt has been made to carry 
on a post-graduate course in naval construction at the 
Naval Academy, but this has been found to be imprac- 
ticable ; and therefore elementary instruction on the sub- 
ject only is now given, and the graduates who go into 
the construction corps are sent abroad to study in the 
technical colleges of England and France. 

Owing to the insufficiency of junior officers for active 
service, the teaching staff at the Academy became much 
reduced, so that during the year 1899-1900 the same in- 
structors taught both seamanship and navigation, and the 
two departments of mechanics and steam engineering 
were merged into a single department of marine engineer- 
ing and naval construction. 

Throughout Admiral McNair's term, practical work on 
the water in small craft was encouraged. The fine cutter 
yacht presented to the Naval Academy by the estate of 

Later-Day History 


Mr. Robert Center of New York, and named after that 
gentleman — its former owner, — was in constant employ- 
ment for the purposes of instruction, and several torpedo- 
boats of the latest design were also in similar use. 

Athletics were greatly fostered. There were two regu- 
lar football teams, the first being the representative 
Academy eleven, and the second, the so-called " Hust- 
lers," besides four other teams recruited one from each 
of the mihtary divisions; four baseball nines, two boats' 
crews for the eight-oared shells, a fencing team, and a 
track team. The best athletic records made up to 1900 
by the cadets were as follows : 


220 ** *' 



Mile run 


120 yards hurdle 


220 " " 


Running high jump 


Broad jump .... 


Standing broad jump 


Pole vault 


Throwing hammer, i6 lbs. 


Putting shot, 16 lbs 


* 50-yard swim 


Kicking football 


Throwing baseball 


W. Henderson, '97 10 sec. 

" " " 22J sec. 

" " 53 sec. 

Macarthur, Jr., '96 2 min. lof sec. 

W. Vincent, '99 5 min. 3 sec. 

E. Taussig, '96 19 sec. 

K. Taussig, '99 29I sec. 

D. Wainright, 1900 5 ft. 7|- in. 

H. Camden, '91 21 ft. 4 in. 

K. Robinson, 'gi 10 ft. 6^ in. 

C. Muston, '96 10 ft. f in. 

D. Karns, '95 92 ft. 7 in. 

" 35 ft. 9iin. 

'f. B. Izard, '95 3if sec. 

T. Wade, 1900 182 ft. 6 in. 

/. B. Izard, '95 347 ft. 10 in. 

In February, 1900, Rear-Admiral McNair, on account 
of impaired health, sought relief from the arduous duties 
of the superintendency. His administration, though 
short, and hampered by the material changes due to the 
Personnel law and by the general unsettlement incident 
to the destruction of the old Academy buildings and the 
beginning of the new ones, was highly creditable and 

* World's record. 

344 The United States Naval Academy 

efficient. He was succeeded by Commander Richard 
Wainwright, a member of the class of 1868, and the now 
famous captain of the Gloucester in the battle of Santi- 
ago. The appointment was in deserved recognition of 
Wainwright's splendid gallantry and daring in that 
action. His prior service at the Academy had been 
brief, covering but two years as an instructor in the de- 
partment of English, and, since the war, duty as officer 
in charge of the Santee and the practice ships. Few 
men, however, are better posted in Academic matters or 
are more capable of efficiently administering the office 
of superintendent. He was one of the youngsters of 
Porter's regime, and can be relied upon to maintain the 
" honor system." The great majority of the living line 
officers who in the past have so ably built up the School 
are senior to him, and hence cannot be his subordinates. 
They will therefore be replaced in the future by younger 
men, and thus with its new buildings beginning to rise 
above their foundations, and with an officer of world-wide 
reputation at its head, the Naval Academy begins a new 
epoch, and the most promising one of its existen-ce. 

Here ends the history of the United States Naval 
Academy so far as it can now be written. From a 
school for midshipmen it has grown in the space of fifty- 
five years to a great national college, conceded the world 
over to be second to none in the thoroughness and 
excellence of its work. 

The total number of graduates, including the midship- 
men of the date of 1840, who first attended instruction at 
Annapolis, and including the class which should have been 
graduated in 1899, is 2420. If the oldsters be excluded 

Latter-Day History 345 

— and they have always insisted to the contrary — and 
the graduates limited solely to those who, beginning 
with the class which was graduated in 1854, entered for 
the fixed four-years course, then the total becomes re- 
duced to 2122. Comparing this last total with the aggre- 
gate number of undergraduates who have entered since 
the regular course was established, the proportion of 
those who have been graduated to those who entered is 
a little short of 44 per cent. This ratio is at the present 
time considerably augmented, and sometimes exceeds 50- 
per cent. 

Of the entire number of graduates, including those of 
the early dates, about 51 per cent, still (1900) are in 
active service in the Navy ; 6 per cent, are on the retired 
list; 24 per cent, are dead; and 19 per cent, have left 
the Navy and are in active civil pursuits. 

The total cost of the Naval Academy to the country 
(sum of all appropriations), including the year 1898, 
has been in round numbers $8,000,000. That is about 
25 per cent, more than the amount paid for a single 
battle-ship, such as the Indiana, or the Iowa. The 
highest sum appropriated for its support in any one year 
has been about $237,000. Its average yearly cost is- 
about $190,000. The yearly expense of keeping the 
cruiser New York in commission is about $400,000. The 
Newark costs 25 per cent. less. From this it will be 
observed that the average yearly cost of maintenance 
of the Naval Academy has been about one half that 
required for a single large cruiser, and about two thirds- 
that required for a single small cruiser of the Newark type. 

These comparisons are made with ships of the modern. 

346 The United States Naval Academy 

Navy. It may be interesting to institute a comparison 
with a ship of the Robesonian era. The total cost of the 
Naval Academy, which has supplied all the regular line 
officers (excepting perhaps seventy-five) now for forty- 
five years, has been about twice that of the United States 
ship Tennessee, which, adding " repairs" to first cost, 
amounted to nearly $4,000,000, and which, when sold at 
auction, brought the sum of $34,555- It is also interest- 
ing to remark that, between the years 1865 and 1887, the 
amount practically squandered, or worse, in behalf of the 
Navy amounted to nearly nine times the entire cost of 
the Naval Academy up to to-day. 

Of the old professors who contributed so much to the 
establishment and development of the Academy in its 
early days, all are now deceased. 

Professor Chauvenet resigned in 1859 to become Pro- 
fessor of Mathematics and Astronomy at the Washington 
University at St. Louis, from which post he retired in 
1868, and died in 1870. Professor H. H. Lockwood left 
the Academy in 1871, retired from active service in 1876, 
and died in 1899. 

Professor Augustine W. Smith, who, after twenty 
years' service at Wesleyan University, assumed the chair 
of Natural and Experimental Philosophy in i860, re- 
mained until his death in 1867. 

Professor John H. C. Coffin, who was already one of 
the oldest professors in the Navy when he came to 
AnnapoHs in 1853, l^ft in 1864 to become Superintendent 
of the Nautical Almanac, retired in 1877, and died in 
1890. Professor William F. Hopkins, who preceded 
Professor A. W. Smith, resigned in 1861 to become U. 

Latter-Day History 347 

S. Consul at Jamaica, W. I., where he died after a brief 
residence. Professor Arsfene N. Girault, who came to 
the Academy in 1845, retired in 1864 and died in 1874; 
and Professor Leopold V. Dovilliers, who succeeded him 
as Professor of the French Language, died in harness in 
1872. Professor Joseph E. Nourse left the Academy in 
1865, and died in 1889. Professor Edward A. Roget 
resigned his chair of Spanish in 1873, and died in 1887. 
Professor Mark H. Beecher retired in 1864, and died in 
1882. Professor Edward A. Seager, after sixteen years' 
service as Professor of Drawing, retired in 1871, and died 
in 1886. Professor William H. Wilcox remained as head 
of the Department of Mathematics until his death in 1870. 

Of the two line officers who first came to the Naval 
Academy, Lieutenant James H. Ward rose to the rank 
of commander, and was killed in action in June, 1861. 
Passed Midshipman Marcy left the Academy in 1856, 
and reached command rank, but died as the result of an 
accident in 1862. 

The Navy owes much to these devoted and excellent 
men, and when the projected new buildings of the Acad- 
emy are completed, provision will doubtless be made for 
lasting memorials of them. 

Of the employees of the Academy, Mr. Richard M. 
Chase held the post of secretary from the early " fifties " 
until 1898; and long enough to see many a youngster, 
who arranged with him for his first outfit as a mid- 
shipman, terminate his naval career as a rear-admiral. 
During all that period it was his boast that he never 
forgot the name nor the face of a student ; nor was he 
ever found at fault in his marvellous memory. 

348 The United States Naval Academy 

The one living survivor of the old Naval School who 
still remains at his ancient post is John Jarvis, drummer 
and mail-carrier. Far back in the " forties," he was in the 
Marine Band at Washington ; and then he went slaver- 
catching on the African coast in the Marion; and just 
about fifty years ago, when the white-haired old admirals 
on the retired list were rollicking reefers fretting under 
Lockwood's drill, Jarvis began to beat the drum to keep 
their marching footsteps in time. He kept on beating it 
for drills and dinners and reveille and tattoo and quarters 
year in and year out, until the Academy migrated to 
Newport, and then he became the mail-carrier, and the 
youngsters always joyfully welcomed him as the bearer of 
news from home. That office was so congenial to him 
that about a generation ago he hung up his drum for- 
ever, and yielded his place to the bugler. He kept on 
getting the letters, and he is at it yet. Some of these 
days when he gets old — which is still, of course, a long 
time distant — perhaps the powers that be will make proper 
provision for his pleasant and honorable retirement, with 
the substantial reward which he has so well earned. 

The Naval Academy has granted diplomas of three 
different designs. The first, which was originally given 
at the end of the four-years course, was devised by the 
Professor of Drawing, Mr. Edward Seager, and bears the 
representation of the old sloop-of-war Preble, Stribling 
Row, and the recitation building. This was signed 
originally by the entire Academic Board. In Admiral 
Porter's time, this design was abandoned, and another 
substituted showing simply a steam frigate of the type 
then in vogue, and the document was signed solely by 


(The star on the collar indicates place among the five members of highest scholastic standing in 
the class ; the three stripes and star on the sleeve show the rank of cadet lieutenant.) 

Latter-Day History 349 

the Superintendent. Still later, this was abolished in 
favor of a somewhat complicated testimonial, whereon 
were represented various mythological deities and 
animals. At the present time, diploma No. 3, with 
wording suitably changed, is given to the cadet as a 
certificate of proficiency when he completes the four- 
year course. Diploma No. 2 is not used. Diploma 
No. I is now the diploma proper, and is bestowed upon 
the graduates after they have finished their two years' 
sea service. 

The seal or coat-of-arms of the Naval Academy has for 
its crest a hand grasping a trident, below which is a shield 
bearing an ancient galley coming into action, bows on, 
and below that an open book, indicative of education, 
and finally bears the motto, '''Ex Scientia Tridens ' ' (From 
knowledge, the sea power). The whole is the design of 
the author, and was adopted by the Navy Department in 
1898. Up to that year, the Naval Academy had possessed 
no authorized device, although it had printed on its Regis- 
ters an arbitrary symbol. The occasion which led to the 
adoption of the present design was the building of a new 
club-house by the University Club of New York, on the 
exterior of which the coats-of-arms of the several colleges 
were placed as an embellishment, and this brought the 
fact to general notice that the Naval Academy had no 
badge of the kind. The matter was at once taken up by 
Mr. Jacob W. Miller, of the class of 1867, and mainly 
through his endeavors the desired approval of the Navy 
Department was secured. 


Wherein is Set forth the Manner in which a Youth is Appointed 
to the Naval Academy, and an Attempt is Made to Indicate 
the Turn of Mind he should Have to Warrant his Entering 
the Navy 

THE conditions which govern the admission of a 
cadet into the United States Naval Academy are 
prescribed by statute law. The number of can- 
didates allowed is one for every member or delegate of 
the House of Representatives, one for the District of 
Columbia, and ten from the whole country, or, in other 
words, at large. This provision for cadets at large does 
not mean that ten cadets are thus appointed yearly. On 
the contrary, it is specifically prescribed that there shall 
not be more than ten such cadets in the Academy at any 
time. The course is six years, of which the first four are 
spent at the Academy at Annapolis, and the last two on 
cruising vessels at sea. At the end of the fotir years' 
period, the cadet, on passing an examination, receives a 
certificate of proficiency. He then leaves the Academy. 
At the end of the ensuing two years, he goes back to the 
Academy, from whatever part of the world he may be, and 
is there again examined, and, if successful, is finally 
graduated and given his diploma. If he is not successful, 
he is dropped from the Navy. 


On Becoming a Naval Cadet 351 

The district from which a cadet has been appointed 
does not become vacant until after the final graduation 
of that cadet at the end of the six years' period. Whether, 
therefore, a vacancy exists or not, or will soon exist, in a 
district from which an appointment is desired, is the first 
thing to be ascertained. 

When such a vacancy occurs it is the duty of the Secre- 
tary of the Navy, as soon after the sth day of March as 
possible in each year, to notify the member or delegate 
in Congress possessing the right of recommendation. It 
is then the duty of such member or delegate to select 
his candidate from the actual residents of his district or 
territory, and to recommend him to the Secretary for 
appointment before the first day of the following month 
of July. If no recommendation is made by that time, 
then the Secretary of the Navy must himself fill the 
vacancy by appointment. 

It is provided by law that when any candidate who has 
been nominated upon the recommendation of a member 
or delegate is found, upon examination, to be physically 
or mentally disquahfied for admission, the member or 
delegate shall be notified to recommend another candi- 
date in place of the one rejected. It has become the 
custom of recent years for congressmen to recommend 
to the Secretary two persons at the outset, one of which 
is commonly known as the " principal," and the other as 
the " alternate." 

The principal, who must be designated, is the only 
nominee known to the law ; and therefore he is the one 
who is examined in the first instance. Should he fail to 
pass the examination, then the alternate is supposed to 

352 The. United States Naval Academy 

have been recommended in accordance with the provision 
which requires a new recommendation from the represen- 
tative upon the failure of his first-named candidate, the 
legal place of whom the alternate now takes, and under- 
goes the regular examination. 

The advantage of appointing alternates is twofold : 
First, it secures the presence of a new candidate in readi- 
ness to take the place of the regular nominee in event of 
the latter's failure, and without the delay incident to 
making another selection ; and, second, it gives to the 
alternate himself a conditional preference over every one 
€lse save the principal and enables him therefore to make 
such preparation for the coming ordeal as he may deem 
justified by the circumstances. The value of the alter- 
nate's position depends, of course, upon the chances of 
failure of the principal, and as a general rule these are 
pretty well canvassed by himself and his friends. There 
is apparently nothing to prevent a representative from 
revoking his designation of an alternate when he pleases, 
and without cause, except his own sense of prudence. 

It will be obvious that the rules established by law to 
govern the making of appointments to the Naval Acad- 
emy indicate three ways in which this can be done: (i) 
by nomination of the representative in Congress of the 
district in which the candidate resides; (2) by direct ap- 
pointment of the Secretary of the Navy to fill the 
vacancy, if the representative fails to make nomination 
within the specified time ; (3) by direct appointment of the 
President of the United States, or, as it is termed, at large. 

With regard to the third method, it is now the well- 
settled custom for the President to exercise his limited 

On Becoming a Naval Cadet 353 

power in favor of only the sons of officers of the Army 
and Navy. This is but right and just. Such officers are 
liable to be sent to any part of the country, and their 
families, whenever possible, follow them, so that they 
may often be without a qualifying legal residence in any 
district. Under the laws of heredity, it is a reasonable 
presumption that the son of a man who has proved him- 
self a capable and efficient public servant will, in some 
measure, inherit his father's abilities, and therefore it 
is sound policy to provide a special means whereby youth 
of such ancestry may be chosen for similar service. It 
is to be remembered that the army or navy officer rarely 
has the political influence which enables him to command 
the favor of a representative to any such extent, at least, 
as an active constituent in private life. He has, further- 
more, devoted himself to his country's service, and, while 
his position is secure, it is not one which permits of the 
accumulation of wealth. Hence the education of a son 
is often a heavy tax on his slender resources. If that 
son is eligible to continue the father's work, the nation 
can well afford to relieve the parent of the burden of 
preparation. It is, therefore, virtually useless for private 
citizens to prefer their requests to the President, and a 
proper sense of patriotism and gratitude to their de- 
fenders generally deters them from doing so. 

As to the second method, it is very seldom that a 
congressman fails to take advantage of every privilege 
which he possesses involving patronage. The reasons 
are plain. Should he fail to do so, however, the Secre- 
tary of the Navy cannot appoint a cadet at large, or from 
the whole country, but is restricted in his selection to a 

354 The United States Naval Academy 

person who has been a resident of the district in which 
the vacancy occurs for at least two years immediately 
preceding the date of appointment. In other respects, 
he is not limited in his choice. 

The great majority of all the appointments are made 
on the nomination of congressmen. This selection is 
ordinarily made in one of the following three ways; 

(i) The representative arbitrarily chooses any youth 
resident in his district possessing in his opinion the 
requisite qualifications. 

(2) The representative arbitrarily chooses any youth 
resident in his district through whose selection he can 
score off the largest amount of political obligation. 

(3) The representative avoids both the burden of per- 
sonal choice and the danger of offending constituents 
not preferred in the appointment, by throwing it open to 
scholastic competition, and permitting a board of judges 
or examiners to determine and certify to him the name 
of the successful contestant. 

The second way is indefensible, and, on the whole, the 
chances are against the youth so selected succeeding in 
passing the entering examination, or, if he does so, of 
maintaining his plkCe in the School throughout the 
course. Naturally there will be exceptions, whenever 
special talent happens to exist. 

Concerning the respective merits of the first and third 
methods, there is much difference of opinion. The ad- 
vocates of the first hold that scholastic attainments are 
far from being the sole qualification, and even deny that 
they are the most important one, and insist that a repre- 
sentative who bases his action solely on a trial involving 

On Becoming a Naval Cadet 355 

these only, neglects his duty in that he fails to take into 
consideration factors on which his judgment should de- 
pend. They aver that if Congress had wished to make 
proficiency in studies the test, it could have done so, and 
could still do so best by bringing the appointments under 
civil-service rules, and providing for examinations at suit- 
able points throughout the country to which youth from 
any section might repair. They claim that the choice 
by a representative presupposes personal knowledge by 
him of all the antecedents and characteristics of the can- 
didate ; that he has no right to deprive the country of the 
full measure of advantage intended thus to be secured ; 
and that he has no more authority to restrict, by any 
course of procedure, his own choice, or substantially to 
delegate it to some one else, than any one has to impose 
restrictions on him. 

Those who favor the competitive examination system 
generally point to the great waste of time, labor, and 
money which results from the failure of ill-prepared can- 
didates to pass the entering examination, and are ready 
to remedy the difficulty by any proper means which will 
insure reasonable proficiency in advance. They main- 
tain that the Naval Academy is a great national school, 
to which all of the youth of the country should have free 
access under the law, and that the exercise of an arbi- 
trary nominating power by a representative must of 
necessity be tinged, so long as human nature and political 
human nature is as it is, with favoritism or personal con- 
siderations which should have no place in the decision. 
They claim that in large city districts especially it is im- 
possible for any representative to have an intimate 

356 The United States Naval Academy 

knowledge of every eligible boy sufficient to enable him 
to make an intelligent choice ; and that the question is 
not whether this or that boy, arbitrarily selected, has the 
necessary qualifications, but which boy out of all that 
are eligible in the district has them in the highest de- 
gree. And they insist that, inasmuch as no matter how 
superior a student may be in other respects, his stay at 
the Academy depends upon his scholastic attainments, 
therefore the one most proficient in them at the outset 
is not only the logical person to appoint, but the best 
material to provide in order to enable the Academy, 
viewed as a machine, to produce the most efficient and 
most economical output. 

So far as mere statistics go, they prove as little as 
statistics usually do in cases where the personal equation 
enters in unknown degree as a disturbing element in the 
problem. The Academy at one time and another has re- 
ceived phenomenal newsboys and others from the public 
schools who distanced all comers in the competition, but 
who failed dismally in studies of an elementary character. 
On the other hand, naval apprentice boys have been 
chosen as the result of pure competition, and some of 
them are now among the ablest officers of the Navy. 
When the cadet engineers were merged with the cadet 
midshipmen, under the Act of 1882, the former had all 
entered after sharp competition among a large number 
of candidates. They took at once a high place in the 
several classes, and maintained it. On the other hand, 
the large majority of the graduates of the Naval Academy 
did not enter it as a result of competition. 

Where the closest students of the question disagree, it 

On Becoming a Naval Cadet 357 

is always presumptuous to advance an individual opinion, 
but it certainly seems that the controlling consideration 
is the right of the representative to his free choice. 
This implies the selection of ways and means conducive 
to the making of that choice, as well as the direct select- 
ive act. He is free to avail himself of competition, or 
not, as he pleases. He is obliged to exercise his judg- 
ment — but whether he shall do so at the outset by 
establishing a specific and public test, or by private trials 
conducted by himself perhaps in petto, is within his 

So long as the law remains as it is, the presumption 
must be that no better, safer, and more flexible means 
on the whole can be devised than that which imposes 
(with the exceptions noted) upon the individuals com- 
posing the popular branch of Congress the initial re- 
sponsibility of the selection of the young officers of the 
Navy; and this even though purists in constitutional 
interpretation may see therein an infringement upon the 
prerogative of the executive department. 

Inasmuch as the candidate is necessarily a minor, the 
question of determining or aiding him in a choice of 
career is ordinarily one for the parent or guardian. The 
naval oiificer is a sort of world-pervading Bedouin, and, 
rarely having any settled abode until after his retirement 
from active service, his life is one about which the ma- 
jority of people know little — and what they do know is 
apt to be so colored with romance or misconceptions that 
they generally know it wrong. The consequence is, that 
the boy who is started on a naval career does not get the 
benefit of the experience of others, which as a rule quickly 

358 The United States Naval Academy 

and wisely determines his relative aptitude for the dry- 
goods business or the medical college. While, as a mat- 
ter of course, all considerations must be governed largely 
by individual circumstances, there are many of general 
application affecting the candidate for the Naval Acad- 
emy which may here be briefly noted. 

Although the Naval Academy is a national school, it 
is not a political institution. Political ' ' pull ' ' stops at 
the threshold of the very first examination room. It is 
profoundly immaterial whether • or not all the judges, 
senators, and custom-house officials in a State certify 
that James Jones, Jr., is a youth of superior talents, lofty 
aims, and noble principles. James Jones, Jr., will be ex- 
amined on his merits and on nothing else — and if he fails 
to attain the standard fixed for everybody, he will not 
get in. To show that he has walked from Oregon to 
Annapolis on the railway track, or that his relatives have 
poured wealth into the local campaign barrel, or that he 
knows the history of the war of 1812 by heart, or that 
he has handled a catboat from early infancy, or even that 
he has been a prominent member of the Naval Militia, 
will not help him. Nor upon his failure to pass will it 
be in any wise availing to have his congressman denounce 
the professors at Annapolis as pedants, snobs, or pluto- 
crats. If he be so fortunate as to get a second chance, he 
will assuredly meet again the same rigid impartiality. 

There is nothing about the Naval Academy — because 
it happens to be a national institution — which distin- 
guishes it from any other goal to be attained only upon 
successful compliance with definitely prescribed con- 
ditions. When Mr. James Jones, Sr., by any process of 

(In football uniform.) 

On Becoming a Naval Cadet 359 

political, sentimental, or other reasoning, can convince a 
farmer that Jones's one-peck measure holds a bushel, 
and sell him seed accordingly, or persuade a customer 
that Jones's 1 8-inch rule measures a yard, and, on that 
basis, sell him dry goods, then Mr. James Jones, Jr., 
who cannot meet the standards, can be got, by similar 
arguments into the United States Naval Academy ; — but 
not before. 

The qualifications demanded of a cadet are both phys- 
ical and mental. The law fixes the age for entrance to 
the Naval Academy between fifteen and twenty years. 
So long as the present seniority system of promotion pre- 
vails in the Navy, the younger a boy goes in the better 
for him, if all continues well in after-life. If he is able to 
enter at fifteen, he should do so, as a year or two of 
youth in his favor may determine whether he shall finish 
his career as an admiral instead of as a captain. 

A thoroughly strong constitution is absolutely essen- 
tial. Health at the time of entry is not enough, even if 
it be sufficient tovcarry him past the examining surgeons, 
and even if he shows himself free from the long list of 
disqualifying ills which flesh is heir to, which are duly 
set down in the Naval Academy Register, whereof any 
one can have a copy for the asking. There should be 
every indication that he has the physical stamina which 
can be relied upon to sustain the man of mature years after 
a life of trying work, so that he will not find his career 
stopped by a naval Retiring Board just when he has 
reached that age when the drudgery of routine subordi- 
nation begins to give place to the responsibilities of 

36o The United States Naval Academy 

Officers of long service break down frequently from 
nervous prostration, or from inability to regain their 
strength after attacks of the fevers common on tropical 
stations. It is therefore important to look to the boy's 
heredity, and if his forbears be weak, launch him in some 
other calling. 

Of the specific imperfections which may develop in 
after-life, defective vision is the most common and 
equally the most fatal to a successful naval career. For 
this the axe may fall at any time, and the particular cause 
may be one which would be of little moment in other 
circumstances. There is a well-known instance of a lieu- 
tenant of nearly thirty years' service, and highly distin- 
guished as a specialist, being peremptorily retired just on 
the eve of promotion because color-blindness was then, 
seemingly for the first time, exhibited, and despite the 
fact that he had passed several rigid examinations in the 

That much time will be afforded for recuperation, or to 
experiment with treatments to meet the development of 
chronic physical troubles, cannot be safely relied upon. 
If an officer has had considerable sick leave, and a neces- 
sity arises for his service in some particular billet, and 
thereupon he demurs to his orders on the ground of ill 
health, the next communication from Washington is apt 
to be a command to present himself before the Retiring 
Board ; after that, if the verdict is unfavorable, he stays 
" on the beach," with no further promotion and a largely 
reduced salary. There is no going out and coming back 
again ; no temporary ' ' withdrawals from business, ' ' to 
which the citizen invalid may resort. The career is 

On Becoming a Naval Cadet 361 

blighted, and the victim is usually unfitted by age and 
habits to begin a new one. 

Nor is vigorous health necessary solely in order to in- 
sure the future. There is no place in the Naval Academy 
for chronically ailing youngsters. There is an excellent 
hospital, and a fine medical staff ready to cure their tem- 
porary illnesses ; but to enter a boy knowing that he has, 
for example, a rheumatic inclination or delicate digestive 
apparatus, is simply to invite his failure, preceded by a 
period, more or less long, of unavailing struggle with all 
the disheartening effects attendant thereupon. 

The law requires that he shall be ' ' physically sound, 
well formed, and of robust constitution." If he is mani- 
festly under weight, or too short for his age, that is a 
reason for rejection. The Naval Academy shuts its eyes 
to the fact that some of the greatest minds have been 
encased in small bodies, and its doors to all boys who are 
under five feet in height. 

With respect to mental qualifications, the prime requi- 
site is that the inclination of the boy's mind shall be 
analytic and not synthetic. The intellect which seeks to 
originate, which recoils from details, which is essentially 
constructive, will find in the Navy no proper field for its 
exercise. It may work harm. It seldom secures reward, 
and practically never one that is adequate as compared 
with the recompense which like abilities command in other 
careers. A naval officer's work is made up of many acts 
and many observances under a great variety of conditions. 
Like all people subject to military discipline, he follows a 
course laid out by others, often when his own judgment 
differs from theirs. He cannot criticise the directions of 

362 The United States Naval Academy 

his superiors; and superiors he is never without. His 
duty is impHcit obedience. Even if he is charged with 
the control of other people, he is obliged to exercise it in 
precisely definite ways. This is not an environmefnt 
which favors original thought or act, or even any material 
departure from beaten tracks. It is peculiarly one that 
calls for conservatism of action, and nothing is more 
certain than that the naval officer is seldom other than 
typically conservative. 

On the other hand, in such conditions the analytic 
mind finds an almost ideal opportunity for usefulness, — 
there is so much to occupy it in adapting to the require- 
ments of the Navy the results of ever-advancing progress 
made elsewhere; there are so many instances in which 
it can find its best play in co-ordination, in regulation, in 
classification, and in adaptation, just as necessary in 
their way as the efforts of constructive genius. 

Quick intelligence and a capacity for study are, of 
course, impoTta:nt; but talents of the showy order are 
not likely to be useful. The prize scholar who -declaims 
Burke's tjrations at school exhibitions, or writes thought- 
ful essays on his understanding of Robert Browning's 
poems, is less promising on the whole than the youth 
who has a bull-dog grip on fundamental arithmetic. 

In fact, the youth who does not possess a distinct taste 
for mathematics and applied science had better not seek 
admission to the Naval Academy. There is not a study 
which he is called upon to master, saving the languages, 
and whatever pertains to literature, which does not in- 
volve mathematics in some degree. Seamanship, electri- 
cal and steam engineering are merely applied mechanics. 

On Becoming a Naval Cadet 363 

and navigation applied mathematics. These are the 
essential requirements of the naval profession, and they 
are given the greatest weights in determining the efifi- 
ciency and standing of the cadets. 

Natural inclination for the sea is a desirable qualifica- 
tion, but hardly a necessary one; nor can any specific 
fitness be predicated upon a fancy for the romantic side 
of the sailor's life. The " shiver-my-timbers " mariner 
is extinct in the Navy. The modern naval cadet resents 
being termed a " middy." The naval officer of to-day 
looks upon his profession no differently from the lawyer 
or the doctor, and, even in circumstances which make 
history, rarely considers his work from other than a 
matter-of-fact, if not from a severely technical point of 

THE "god of 2.5." 


Wherein is Explained how the Naval Cadets are Regulated and 
Drilled, and what they must Know to Enter the Academy 

THE entrance examination of the Naval Academy- 
might be materially increased in difficulty, and 
still require of the candidate no greater amount 
of knowledge than any intelligent youth who has at- 
tended a public school up to the age of fifteen years 
ought to possess. The subjects are reading, writing, 
spelling, arithmetic, geography, English grammar, United 
States history, world's history, algebra through quadratic 
equations, and plane geometry. Deficiency in any one 
of these studies may be, and usually is, sufficient to in- 
sure the rejection of a candidate. The detailed require- 
ments in each subject are regularly published, together 
with typical sets of questions in each, and as these are 
subject to variation, it is advisable to apply for them to 
the Superintendent of the Naval Academy when they 
are wanted. 

Generally, however, it may be stated that a candidate 
must have a thorough familiarity with English grammar, 
a full and accurate knowledge of the geography of the 
United States, and such a complete understanding of 
arithmetic as will enable him at once to proceed to the 


Cadet Life at the Naval Academy 365 

higher branches of mathematics without further study of 
that subject. He must be able to demonstrate any 
proposition of plane geometry as given in the ordinary 
text-books, and solve simple geometrical problems either 
by a construction or by an application of algebra; to 
state all the leading facts of United States history, and 
especially those relating to the government of the 
country ; and in the history of the world he must have 
such information as is usually found in the ordinary so- 
called general histories. 

If a candidate is not already fully prepared at the 
period of his nomination, comparatively little opportun- 
ity is afforded him to become so before he must present 
himself for examination. If he is nominated in time, he 
will be directed to report on the 15th of May. If not, 
he will be examined on the first day of the following 
September. If either of these dates fall on Sunday, the 
ensuing Monday is substituted. 

With regard to the best mode of preparation, the as- 
sistance of some one already familiar with the methods 
in which the examinations are conducted will be found of 
value. This does not necessarily imply cramming. A 
boy coming to either of the great national schools for his 
first ordeal enters an atmosphere very different in effect 
upon him from that which pervades the examination 
room of a private college. Everything about him is 
strange. He is impressed by his military surroundings, 
the evidences of rigid discipline, the sounds of the bugles, 
the uniforms, the minutiae with which he is ordered — not 
asked— to comply. All of these are distracting to one 
who encounters them for the first time, and yet is obliged 

366 The United States Naval Academy 

to have all his wits about him. He is oppressed also with 
the knowledge that his nomination is public, that his 
friends and neighbors know of it, that those whom he has 
perhaps distanced in competition for the appointment 
have their eyes upon him, and, finally, that there is an 
alternate waiting in Annapolis eagerly hoping that he 
may not succeed, and ready at once to take his place. 

The trial, thus considered, is severe, perhaps as serious 
a one in its way as he may hereafter be called upon to 
undergo. It is therefore a good plan to take the candi- 
date to Annapolis, if such be possible, in advance of the 
examination and let him wander around the Academy, 
which he can freely do, and get acclimatized, so to speak. 
If he has (or can make) an acquaintance among the 
cadets, much will be gained. 

There are in Annapolis, as in all college towns, schools 
especially established for preparing candidates for the 
entrance examination. They usually do good work, and 
vie with one another in the numbers of pupils whom they 
successfully qualify. The experienced guardian will 
readily appreciate, however, the difficulties of the situa- 
tion, if it be contemplated to place the candidate, espe- 
cially if his age approach the lower limit, in such a school 
without immediate home supervision ; and will no doubt 
see the prudence of providing proper parental or equally 
authoritative control on the spot at all times. If a boy's 
mother can be with him, that is the best. 

There is one queer formality which the cadets have 
established of late years for the candidates, and that is 
the salute to the " God of 2.5." How it originated is 
not clear, but it consists in the candidate walking up to 

Cadet Life at the Naval Academy 367 

the ancient figure-head of the Delaware, which stands on 
a pedestal adjacent to the old chapel — now the Lyceum 
— and represents a fierce Indian warrior — said to be 
Tecumseh — and then and there, while standing erect, 
solemnly touching his hat to it. This is supposed to 
insure success — or at least the superstition is that candi- 
dates who do not observe this ceremony take needless 
chances of failure. Probably the custom is based on that 
of the cadets themselves, who have also for a long time 
indulged in similar rank fetishism. They have a notiort 
that the figure exercises a benignant influence to prevent 
their getting the mark of 2.5, or lower; and thus ap- 
proaching the dangerous limits of deficiency, for which 
reason they give it the name above noted. 

It is well to keep clearly in mind, that a boy who 
has simply been crammed with assorted information is. 
likely to fail. The examiners have ways of their own for 
detecting the fact, and then they regard it as their duty to 
protect the Academy by increasing the rigor of the trial. 

After the examination has been successfully passed, 
nothing is more natural than that the accepted candidate 
should wish to return home to receive the congratulations 
of his admiring relatives; but this is denied him. He 
assumes his duties immediately. He is "freedom's now 
and fame's. " He is Naval Cadet James Jones, Jr. , U. S. N. 
— an officer of the United States Navy — and not what 
his father's intimates have hitherto called "Jones's boy." 
He is no longer a " boy " at all; for " boy " is a rating 
among the enlisted force of the Navy, and a low one; 
and indeed, it is even discourteous to a naval cadet to 
call him a boy ; albeit I have done so all through this 

368 The United States Naval Academy 

book, and hereby tender apologies to the battalion ac- 
cordingly. He is always Mr. Jones — not Jones or Jim, 
— and he is spoken of officially never otherwise than by 
his title, or as a " gentleman "; nor may he himself 
otherwise refer to his comrades. For no matter how 
humble his extraction may be, in the purview of the un- 
written laws of caste which prevail in republics as every- 
where else, the moment he dons the uniform of the 
United States officer he is a gentleman by right of his 
profession ; and he can rest assured that his professional 
brethren will see to it that he continues one in every act 
and observance in the fullest sense of the term. 

He is now required to sign articles by which he binds 
himself to serve in the United States Navy for eight 
years (including his time of probation at the Naval 
Academy) unless sooner discharged, and to take the oath 
to support the Constitution, etc. He then — or rather 
his guardian for him — pays to the paymaster of the 
Academy a deposit of $20, to be expended, under the 
direction of the Superintendent, for text-books and other 
authorized articles not in the general supply list ; and at 
the time of this writing the furthei sum of $196.39, 
which covers the purchase of an entire wardrobe. This 
is the first evidence that he receives of the extreme 
minuteness of the manner in which he is going to be 
regulated. He cannot select even his own shirts, collars, 
or cuffs; they must, like his uniforms, comply exactly 
with the regulations, and hence must be obtained from 
the Naval Academy store-keeper. His nearer under- 
wear he can choose for himself, and he is not obliged 
to acquire ' ' one wash-basin and pitcher, " " one cake of 


-L^_.j ij HiL 

, TSSWMwrr-:-^^^ 

u o 

o o 
oc < 

UJ < 

I > 

Cadet Life at the Naval Academy 369 

soap," and " one toot];i-brush, " besides some other small 
articles in conformity with Uncle Sam's ideas unless he 
likes. The prices charged are, however, very reasonable, 
and much less than they are anywhere else, for the Gov- 
ernment buys everything in quantities and by contract, 
and under all sorts of supervisions, inspections, and tests. 
An allowance is made for the utilizable clothing, etc., 
brought from home, and one month after admission the 
cadet is credited with his actual expenses in travelling 
from his home to the Academy; also with his first 
month's pay, for his country is now not only about to 
give him one of the best educations in the world, but to 
pay him $500 per year and the ration (commuted at 30 
cents per day) for receiving it. 

If the youngster enters in May, he goes to the Santee, 
and on that ancient hulk begins his career afloat. He 
sleeps in a hammock slung from the beams of the berth- 
deck, just as his predecessors did in the school-ships 
years before, and has the same struggle with that unruly 
couch until he masters it. He stows his clothes in the 
old lockers which still line the sides of the vessel, and re- 
pairs for his ablutions to the same old wash-room forward 
which years ago was the scene of " running " many an 
unhappy plebe. The first uniform that he wears is the 
working dress, — white canvas jumper over a blue knit 
shirt, canvas trousers, white hat or knit cap as ordered, 
and black silk neckerchief. It is not an elegant attire, 
nor does the stencilling of the cadet's name in big black 
letters across his bosom add to its rechercM appearance. 
But it is good and strong, and will stand hard wear, 
and costs, everything included, only $3.85. 


37° The United States Naval Academy 

If the cadet enters in May, he undertakes no regular 
studies ; and the work cut out for him during the sum- 
mer depends upon whether he is sent to the practice ship 
on her regular cruise, or whether he is kept at Annapolis 
on the Santee. If he proceeds to the practice ship, he 
undergoes an experience similar to that of all of his 
predecessors ; but, unlike most of them, at an earlier 
period of his career. It seems rather a sudden change to 
convert a youth from a land-abiding citizen into a deep- 
sea sailor at a bound ; but, so far, no harm has come from 
it, although the extreme greenness of the neophytes 
makes it rather more difificult for them to acquire their 
sea legs, and for the officers and older cadets to teach 
them to work right. On their return from the cruise, 
however, they are usually bronzed and hearty mariners, 
with fine appetites ; but still they do not get home. The 
fourth class, to which they belong, never receives leave ; 
so they repair once more to the Santee until the regular 
school year begins on October ist. 

When the ' ' May plebes ' ' remain on the Santee all 
summer, they have a regular routine which keeps them 
employed from gun fire and reveille at six o'clock in the 
morning to " taps " at ten o'clock at night. Their work 
is, however, purely practical. They are taught the 
setting-up drill and school of the infantry squad, they 
work in the rigging-loft and learn to make all the knots 
and splices, they become familiar with the guns and their 
parts, they are well drilled at rowing and sailing in the 
boats, and they are made proficient swimmers. For re- 
creation, they have all the usual athletic sports and every 
facility for enjoying them, and the long summer evenings 

Cadet Life at the Naval Academy 371 

are free from study hours. Their food — for which they 
repair to the old mess-hall under the Seamanship build- 
ing — is plain but good ; and they march to meals three 
times a day and enjoy them in a way to excite the envy 
of a Sybarite. In brief, they have an ideal boy's exist- 
ence. There is no mischief they can get into. However 
hot the weather in the town, it is never unduly warm on 
Windmill Point and the water. And after the summer 
has passed pleasantly and profitably, the ist of October 
finds them hearty and healthy, and ready for the mental 
work which is now before them. 

Meanwhile the September examinations have been 
held, and a new batch of youngsters comes trooping to 
the Santee, thus completing the entering class. Then thp 
experienced officers, whose past career I have just traced, 
regard the newcomers with a patronizing air born of 
superior knowledge ; and if they dared, which at present 
they do not, would willingly conduct their younger 
brethren behind the photographer's house near the 
Severn sea-wall, and stand them on their heads and other- 
wise be-devil them, as was the fashion in days now gone. 

The practice ship comes back on about the 28th of 
August with her crew in a fever of anticipation of coming 
leave of absence ; and for a day or so the Academy is in 
an uproar with departing youngsters, and the colored 
express facilities of Annapolis groan under the abnormal 
strain of many scores of trunks to be transported and 
checked to all parts of the land. The united plebes are, 
however, not disturbed, and their routine goes on until 
the multitudinous trunks begin to come back again, and 
their owners likewise, though not so joyously as they 

372 The United States Naval Academy 

went forth. Then farewell is bidden to the Santee and 
hammocks and lockers, and the fourth class moves over 
to the new quarters and ensconces itself two in a room on 
the top floor of that ugly combination of factory and 
hotel which, by grace of Congress, it is hoped will soon 

The cadets' rooms are not exactly luxurious, except 
by contrast with swinging in a hammock and living in a 
locker — and then they are palatial. Works of art do not 
adorn the painted walls, although they can be displayed 
on one shelf of the wardrobe provided the doors are kept 
closed. There are no carpets except the bed rugs. The 
beds themselves are of the most uncompromising wrought- 
iron variety, and the rest of the furniture includes only 
the bare necessities. Anything more the cadets would 
not have even if it were permissible. They do all their 
own chamber-work as it is — bed-making included, and 
floor-washing barred — and more furniture would make 
more work. There is no opportunity for exercising a 
discriminating taste in the arrangement of the apart- 
ments. The interior regulations for the Naval Academy 
look after all that, and admit of no argument about the 
esthetic quality of what they prescribe. 

For anything to be out of its place when a room is 
ready for inspection — which is aU the time from 8 A.M. 
to evening roll call — means demerits for the cadet who is 
in charge of it for the week, a duty which is taken in 
turn by the two occupants. 

In front of the old quarters and running to Maryland 
Avenue extends the brick walk upon which all the ordi- 
nary formations of the battalion are held. At the end 

Cadet Life at the Naval Academy z72> 

of it rises the Tripoli Monument, flanked on each side by 
naval guns captured from the Spaniards in the recent war, 
and by platforms on which are benches. Woe to the 
unlucky plebe who ventures on these seats ! Those on 
the left of the monument, as one faces toward the build- 
ing, are sacred to the first class, those on the right to the 
third class, and they are the gathering-places of the re- 
spective classes, as " behind the Battery " used to be the 
rendezvous for the old midshipmen of fifty years ago. 
Nor may the plebe venture on the path leading from the 
Herndon Monument, known as Love Lane, nor on the 
brick walk which extends directly from the Observatory 
to the Steam building, for that is for the second-class 
men. But everywhere else is open to him, and the fact 
that he is a plebe is no bar to his achieving prominence 
in the football team, or in the rowing crew, or on the 
baseball nine, or in any other of the athletic organiza- 
tions which he is encouraged to join. 

There is no hazing — but if a plebe shows undue con- 
ceit, and essays to impress his comrades with his peculiar 
social or political importance, or the wealth of -his rela- 
tives, or gives any indication of a notion that the Navy 
is especially favored by his presence in it, it is not un- 
likely that over the chatter of the mess-table his voice 
may be heard recounting an idiotic story, or he may be 
found in some part of the grounds solemnly singing his 
last laundry list to the tune of " Yankee Doodle," or 
through some mysterious telepathy his arms may sud- 
denly place themselves akimbo while he promenades the 
brick walks, or he may prefer to compliment the upper- 
class men by dedicating to them a composition of not 

374 The United States Naval Academy 

less than 1900 words on some such subject as the "Thing- 
ness of the Is. ' ' But whatever he does is purely volun- 
tary — or at least seems so ; indeed, he rather prefers to 
do it than otherwise — and if he has sound sense, with 
perfect good nature. 

The new cadet soon discovers that he is a part of a great 
machine, made up of many other parts like himself, and 
that every part has certain definite things to do at certain 
times. He finds that, with perhaps eight or ten others, 
he is a member of a crew, that four of such crews to- 
gether form a division, and that four divisions constitute 
the entire battalion, and this is the fundamental military 
organization, which resembles, in fact, that of a ship-of- 
war. Each crew contains a proportional number of the 
members of the several classes, and is commanded by 
two cadet petty officers — the so-called first captain, being 
a cadet ' ' petty officer of the first class ' ' and a senior- 
class man in the Academy, and the second captain, a 
cadet " petty officer of the second class " and selected 
from the second class in the Academy. The divisional 
cadet officers are a cadet lieutenant, a cadet junior lieu- 
tenant, and a cadet ensign. The battalion cadet officers 
are the cadet lieutenant-commander, the adjutant, who 
is a cadet junior lieutenant, and the cadet chief petty 
officer. These various grades are indicated by stripes 
and other marks worn on the uniform. Thus the cadet 
lieutenant-commander has on the sleeves of his full-dress 
uniform jacket four stripes of narrow gold lace sur- 
mounted by a star, and the cadet lieutenants, junior 
lieutenants, and ensigns, respectively, three stripes, two 
stripes, and one stripe, similarly placed. The cadets call 

Cadet Life at the Naval Academy 375 

these favored individuals the " stripers." They corre- 
spond to the commissioned officers of a warship, and in 
all the evolutions have similar duties to those of commis- 
sioned officers holding like grades. The cadet petty 
officers likewise parallel the petty officers in regular ser- 
vice, and these are about the same as the non-commis- 
sioned officers in the Army organization. The cadet 
chief petty officer is designated by a gold eagle — 
disrespectfully termed " buzzard " by the cadets — above 
which are two stars and below three small chevrons, this 
badge being worn on the right sleeve. Cadet petty 
officers of the first class have a single star above the eagle 
and no chevrons. Those of the second class have the 
eagle and chevrons, but no stars. 

Through these cadet officers the discipline of the 
Academy in large measure is directly enforced. They 
have much power, both official and individual — and they 
are held to a strict accountability for the use of it. The 
positions are highly prized by the cadets, and their evan- 
escent glories eagerly worked for. To " break "or de- 
grade a cadet from his cadet rank is a punishment which 
is deemed very severe, and it is rarely inflicted. 

The divisional arrangement is the basis of the various 
organizations for drills. Thus each division becomes an 
infantry company whereof the cadet lieutenant is chief, 
and so on for the light artillery and boat exercises ; but 
the great difference between the system of to-day and 
that which has prevailed over the larger portion of the 
Academy's existence is due to the changes in great guns. 
The old broadside muzzle-loading gun, mounted on its 
roller carriage and run in and out by tackles, has long 

376 The United States Naval Academy 

since become obsolete, and the guns' crew which manipii- 
lated it has likewise gone. It is hard to imagine the 
cadets no longer crowding the gun-deck of the Santee 
at the beat " to quarters," and dragging the old guns 
in and out as if the fate of the nation depended on 
the celerity of their movements, and, when the Board 
of Visitors came, winding up the exercises with a broad- 
side which would rattle the glass all over the Academy, 
and add another collection of round shot to the iron 
mine which their predecessors had been making for years 
at the bottom of Annapolis harbor. But the guns have 
departed, and even the drums which sounded the call are 
silent, and in place thereof a certain number of cadets 
of the same class repair to the gun-shed where several 
highly organized killing machines are installed, and these 
they manipulate until a target out in the bay is riddled 
with expensive steel bolts. Or else they embark on the 
tug Standish or the famous Gloucester, and practise from 
the moving deck at imaginary torpedo-boats. 

The young cadet having discovered that he is a part of 
a machine, soon also perceives that that machine operates 
in accordance with a very simple and definite system. 
Out of the twenty-four hours which make up the day, 
he studies and is instructed during one third of the 
period, he drills, amuses himself, and eats during another 
third, and he sleeps during the remaining third. Of the 
eight hours which are devoted to study and recitation, 
four occur in the forenoon, two in the afternoon, and 
two in the evening. The evening hours are devoted 
solely to study for the preparation of the tasks for the 
next day. Of the six daylight hours, three are allotted 

Cadet Life at the Naval Academy 377 

to recitations in the section room, and therefore to direct 
instruction, and during the remaining three the cadets 
are required to be in their own rooms, where perfect 
order and quiet must be maintained. No visiting be- 
tween the rooms is permitted during study hours under 
severe penalty. Out of the eight hours allotted to recre- 
ation and drill (or as the last is more commonly termed 
nowadays "practical instruction"), the time afforded for 
recreation extends for about twenty minutes after dinner 
and until the call for afternoon studies; then from the 
close of the drill or dress parade, for a second period, 
which varies from half an hour to an hour; and again 
after supper, and until the call to the rooms for evening; 
study, which is a third period of about half an hour more. 
There is also another brief period of half an hour betweea 
the close of evening studies and the sounding of " taps " 
at 10 P.M., when all lights must be out and every one in^ 
bed, there to sleep until six the next morning. On 
Wednesday afternoons after four o'clock is recreation 
time, and on Saturdays there are studies and drills only- 
up to dinner. After that meal the afternoon is clear, 
and the football games with the visiting teams from 
other colleges are played on the drill ground, and the 
visitors flock in — especially everybody's sister and her 
friend, — and the colors of the Academy, blue and gold, 
blaze everywhere, and the battalion groups itself on one 
side of the gridiron and yells " 'Rah-'Rah-'Rah-Hi- 
Ho-Ha-U. S. N. A.-Siss-B-o-o-m-A-a-h-Nav-e-e- 
e-e! " with so much enthusiasm that when a good tackle 
is made for the Navy side, gray-headed and portly gen- 
tlemen with gold and silver leaves on the collars of their 

378 The United States Naval Academy 

blouses may be observed suddenly to burst into similar 
vociferations, and continue them until they catch one 
another's eye, when they brace up and endeavor to look 
properly dignified and sedate. 

On Saturday evenings, the Armory is brilliantly 
lighted, and again every one's sister and her friend ar- 
rive, and the band, which from long experience plays 
dance music to perfection, keeps feet flying until eleven 
o'clock, when the plaintive bugle notes of "taps" end the 
day. The Academy band discourses excellent music, 
not only at the hops, but twice a day on the parade, and 
it precedes the battalion as it marches to and from driU. 

There is always a graduation ball given by the new 
first class to the class which has just been graduated, and 
sometimes a so-called " first-class ball," which is given 
by the senior class in the winter. For the fourth-class 
man who has just entered into the glories of the third 
class, the June ball is a most important occasion, be- 
cause it is the first time he is permitted to come on the 
floor and dance with a partner of the opposite sex. The 
behavior of the third-class youngsters on this occasion 
is always carefully watched by the upper-class men, who 
derive much satisfaction from observing the gracefulness 
of their movements. 

For those students who prefer more placid enjoy- 
ments, the library of some thirty thousand volumes fur- 
nishes abundant opportunities for desultory reading as 
well as study and research. In 1899, it received as a gift 
from Messrs. Robert M. Thompson, Edward J. Ber- 
wind, and the author, the collection of electrical works 
which the last had made during the preceding fifteen 

Cadet Life at the Naval Academy 379 

years, including every original treatise on the subject of 
el'ectricity, many dating from the fifteenth and sixteenth 
centuries; besides all the important electrical books of 
modern times, so that the, Naval Academy library is 
now superior in this field to any other in the country, 
and has few rivals in the world. In view of the con- 
stantly augmenting application of electricity to naval 
warfare, the facilities thus offered the cadets, it is hoped, 
may prove of value to the country. 

The trophies in the old chapel are always a source of 
lively interest, especially to those of the cadets who for 
the first time are critically studying the famous victories 
of the Navy. There are the captured flags of the Insur- 
gente and the Java, and the Macedonian and the Guerriire 
and the Levant and the Reindeer, besides a host of others, 
every one with its story to tell. And there also is Perry's 
famous blue burgee, worn at his masthead during the 
battle of Lake Erie, with Lawrence's last words, " Don't 
give up the ship " in straggling white letters on it; and 
the flag of the Algerine frigate Mesoura, and Mexican 
banners, and now the Spanish ensigns which were lowered 
at Santiago and Manila. It is a very inspiring sight that 
lot of old bunting, some of it still bearing tell tale red 
stains and riddled with shot holes. 

On Sundays during the forenoon cadets are allowed 
to attend church in Annapolis, if a request to that effect 
is sent by their parents ; but in the absence of such re- 
quest they are all obliged to go to the Academy chapel. 
As a rule, the majority of the cadets prefer to attend the 
Academy services, which are conducted by the chaplain, 
and are non-sectarian. It is customary to hold divine 

38o The United States Naval Academy 

service on Sundays in all ships in commission in the 
Navy, and as very few war vessels carry chaplains, it be- 
comes the duty of the captain or executive officer to read 
the prayers. The Book of Common Prayer of the Epis- 
copal Church is used for this purpose, and for the same 
reason the chaplain of the Naval Academy, regardless of 
his own particular denomination, models his services 
upon the same prayer-book in order to accustom the 
cadets to its use. There is not now, and never has been, 
in the Naval Academy any disciplinary interference with 
the church attendance of any cadet, nor is permission 
ever denied to those who desire to attend churches in 
the town. 

During a part of Sunday afternoon the cadets must be 
in their rooms. There are study hours, as usual, in the 
evening. The net result of it all is that during the week 
the cadets have about forty-four hours of study and 
theoretical instruction, and from seven to nine hours' 
practical instruction or drill; so that out of the eleven 
months while they are at the Academy — one month leave 
of absence being given at the close of the practice cruise 
— not only are three months devoted to the cruise itself, 
which is purely practical work, but about fifteen per 
cent, of the scholastic year in the institution itself is also 
allotted to practical exercises. 

If this be considered small in comparison with the time 
which the average college student has for recreation and 
athletic sports, it must be remembered that this is the 
only period during his entire career when a naval officer 
is forced to study, and thus lay the foundation for his 
professional knowledge, and even this is short when the 

Cadet Life at the Naval Academy 381 

multiplicity of the subjects in which he must be versed 
is considered. It is true that after he has been gradu- 
ated, and even after he has reached command rank, he 
may be ordered to the War College or to the Torpedo 
School for special instruction ; but there he is practically 
his own master, and can learn or not as he chooses. In 
the Naval Academy, on the other hand, he has no dis- 
cretion ; he must do the work that is set before him, and 
in all scholastic branches must attain an average mark 
equal to 62^ per cent, of the maximum, in order to avoid 
the danger of being found deficient, and having his 
career abruptly closed. 

Since athletics have largely entered into the Naval 
Academy life, and the cadets have been permitted to 
enter into competition with the students of other colleges 
in football and other sports, there has been a constant 
struggle between their natural desire to excel in such 
exercises and the obstacle which is presented by the 
great brevity of the recreation periods. The football 
teams and the crews of the rowing shells not infrequently 
sacrifice part of their meal time to obtain a few minutes' 
extra practice, or they rise at an even earlier hour in the 
morning to get the necessary opportunity, and sometimes, 
when a football match of more than usual interest is on, 
the teams can be found practising by the electric light 
after nightfall in the area immediately in the rear of the 
new quarters." Occasionally the authorities will release 
the members of a team from some portion of evening 
study hours for this purpose ; but it is the inflexible rule 
that a cadet shall never sacrifice his scholastic standing 
to becbme proficient in any athletic sport; and the 

382 The United States Naval Academy 

moment it is found that he is doing this, his athletic 
privileges are at once curtailed, or he is debarred from 
a place upon the regular teams. 

The necessity for a stringent rule of this kind will be 
obvious when it is remembered that not only has the cadet 
all he can do to master the necessary studies within the 
period of four years afforded, but that his future place 
in the Navy and his promotion therein depend directly 
upon the final graduating position which he takes in his 
class. All of the line officers of the Navy are arranged 
in a straight line, from admiral down to the lowest ensign, 
and subsequent advancement is strictly by seniority, the 
individuals moving up to take the places of their prede- 
cessors as the latter die, resign, or are retired. Nothing 
disturbs this regular movement upward except a reduc- 
tion in numbers following the sentence of a court-martial, 
or advancement in numbers for gallantry or distinguished 
services in time of war. It follows, therefore, that the 
cadet who devotes himself to athletics or other recreations 
at the expense of his class standing may find in after 
years that he is kept in a lower grade, waiting for those 
above him to rise, much longer than he otherwise would 
have been, and with a consequent proportionate loss in 
rank and pay. 

Probably the United States Navy is the only organiza- 
tion in the world wherein a boy's college standing exer- 
cises so important an influence upon his place in his 
profession during his entire after-life ; but none the less 
such is the fact, and it is one of which the cadet who 
contemplates making the Navy a lifetime career should 
never lose sight. 

Cadet Life at the Naval Academy 383 

During the working hours, and except when actually 
in his room, the cadet is never out o£ some military 
formation. He is perpetually being mustered and 
marched. After the morning gun fires, he has forty 
minutes in which to dress himself and put his room in 
order, and then he falls into ranks for the morning roll 
call. Then he goes to breakfast and to prayers, and at 
half-past seven, if he is sick, reports himself to the sur- 
geon. If that officer finds he is sufficiently unwell, he 
may be put on the sick-list, which excuses him from all 
studies and exercises for the day, and perhaps sends him 
to the hospital ; or he may be put on another list, which 
releases him simply from the practical drills. Otherwise, 
he begins his study and recitation period at eight o'clock. 
At the end of the morning hours comes dinner, and a 
brief recreation, then the afternoon study hours, then 
drill and perhaps dress parade, and then the evening 
study hours, and so the day closes. 

There are two principal formations, as they are called, 
one of which takes place before meals, and the other when 
the cadets go to recitation. In the first, the battalion 
falls in by divisions on the brick walk leading from the 
quarters to the Tripoli Monument. The cadet lieutenant- 
commander, who then takes charge, posts himself on a 
white brick on a cross-walk in front of the battalion. The 
separate divisions are aligned by the cadet lieutenants, 
mustered by their petty officers, and finally aligned by 
the adjutant, who subsequently takes his place on another 
white brick on the same cross-walk, but between the 
cadet lieutenant-commander and the battalion ; and then 
he publishes whatever orders there may be to make 

384 The United States Naval Academy 

known to the cadets, or reads the conduct report ; and 
finally the battalion is faced to the right by the cadet 
lieutenant-commander, and it is marched, a division at 
a time, into the mess-hall by the respective division 

The other principal formation does not involve the 
whole battalion but only such parts of it as are to pro- 
ceed to recitation at the time for purposes of instruction 
in the class-rooms. Each class is divided into sections in 
each study, the cadets being arranged in the order of 
their standing or average marks in that study for the 
preceding month. When the call to recitation is sounded 
by the bugle, the several sections fall in on the brick 
walk in front of the new quarters in the immediate charge 
of the senior cadet officer present. Each section has a 
leader, who is appointed by the Commandant of Cadets, 
and who musters his section and reports his absentees to 
the officer of the day, and after that is done the sections 
are subsequently marched in charge of their leaders to 
the various recitation-rooms. On reaching a recitation- 
room, the cadets of the section form in front of it, ranks 
are broken, the room entered, and the section leader 
turns over the charge of the section to the instructor. 
The recitation then goes on in the usual way, some of 
the cadets being sent to the blackboards to write down 
their demonstrations and others are questioned individ- 
ually, until the allotted time has elapsed, and then the 
instructor in turn transfers the charge of the section back 
to its leader, who forms it once more outside of the reci- 
tation-room door and marches it back to quarters, report- 
ing himself to the commissioned officer in charge who is 

Cadet Life at the Naval Academy 385 

on duty that day, and after that the section is dismissed, 
and the cadets repair to their rooms. 

To any visitors of the Academy not familiar with the 
details of the routine it seems that all day long there is a 
constant falling in and out of divisions and companies, 
an unremitting series of more or less unintelligible bugle 
calls, and a marching hither and thither of small bodies 
of cadets in all possible directions. But as I have said, 
it is a machine, every part of which operates in perfect 
order and without the slightest friction or confusion, and 
the young cadet soon masters all of its intricacies, so that 
in a very few days his action is as automatic as that of 
his older comrades. 

From the author's " Shakings," 1867. 


Wherein the Organization of the Academy and the Branches of 
Learning there Taught are Considered 

THE football field, the tennis grounds, the beauti- 
fully equipped gymnasium, the school buildings, 
and, on Saturday afternoons, the cadets in little 
groups strolling around the walks, all go to suggest the 
atmosphere of an ordinary college, and only the uniforms 
and the old guns scattered about the enclosure and the 
ancient hulk of the Santee or the tall masts of the practice 
ships moored to the wharf or out in the stream seem 
strange. But the resemblance goes no further than this 
merely superficial aspect. The iron hand of discipline is 
everywhere exerted. There are no bolting of recitations, 
no cutting of chapel, no spreads or parties in rooms, no 
skylarking in the hall or corridors, no fraternities, no 
nocturnal raids into the town, no selection of what will 
be studied and what not, and no Christmas holidays at 
home ; and even if you watch the youngsters themselves 
as they stroll around the paths which border the trim 
lawns, you will constantly see things done which one 
never sees on the campus of the college. There may be 
a flagstaff in the college field with the ensign floating 
from-it, but one never sees the students who are lounging 


Discipline and Studies 387 

around in the vicinity suddenly straighten and stand 
erect at the notes of the bugle, no matter where they 
may be, and then, facing the ascending or descending 
colors, remain as rigid as statues with their hands at 
salute to their caps. 

Besides, lounging among the cadets is never sprawling. 
They can go to the tennis ground or to the ball fields 
and play as ordinary individuals, and wear the roughest 
of garments, and roll on the earth to their hearts' content ; 
but once in uniform they must be trim, and white gloves 
must be worn, and no professor or officer can be passed 
without those white gloves going instantly to the cap, so 
that the youngsters' arms' are in more or less perpetual 
vibration. Then underneath it all is the existence of the 
police; not the watchmen who patrol the grounds and 
simply have general care of the public property, nor yet 
the marine sentries who silently pace their beats at the 
gate, but the police organization which is formed mainly 
of the cadets themselves, and this is more complicated. 

At the head of it is the Commandant of Cadets, the 
officer attached to the institution who is next in rank to 
the Superintendent — usually a commander in the Navy. 
Assisting him are four or more commissioned officers of 
the rank of lieutenant or lieutenant-commander, each one 
of whom has direct charge of the battalion during his 
tour of duty of twenty-four hours, from which he gets 
the name of ' ' officer in charge. ' ' The immediate assistant 
of the officer in charge is the ' ' officer of the day. " He is 
a cadet of the first class. Then on each floor of the 
quarters is stationed a " cadet in charge," who is always 
either of the first class or of a higher class than the cadets 

388 The United States Naval Academy 

who happen to room on the particular floor which is 
under his jurisdiction ; and finally, in each room, as I have 
said, one of the cadets living therein is regarded as in 
charge of it for a week at a time. 

For the condition of the room the cadet in charge of it 
is responsible. For the condition of the floor and for 
seeing that those who live thereon are in their rooms 
during study hours and maintain quiet, the cadet in 
charge of the floor is responsible. It is his business to 
know where every cadet of that floor is at all times during 
the working hours. For the supervision of the cadets in 
charge of floors and of the sections which form for recita- 
tion and for looking up absentees the officer of the day 
is responsible, and for the condition of the whole build- 
ing and the maintenance of order everywhere in it, the 
commissioned officer in charge is responsible ; and, lastly, 
for the discipline of the entire battalion at all times 
and all seasons the Commandant of Cadets, who is the 
titular head of the Department of Discipline, is himself 

The only times when the professors or instructors are 
in charge of the cadets is during actual recitations or 
drills. Such is the network with which this body of 
boys is encompassed and which has for its function the 
keeping ot them in order. It might well be supposed 
that in such an environment there would be no chance 
for disorder; but that is to overlook the ingenious 
capacity of boy nature for dodging restraints. Not long 
ago an effervescent lot of them hoisted a pirate flag over 
the new quarters. 

The Department of Discipline acts upon the cadets in 

(From the architect's drawing.) 

Discipline and Studies 389 

two ways: it rewards them for being good, it punishes 
them for being bad. It never proceeds arbitrarily. It 
is governed by a minute code of regulations which no 
cadet need ever infringe without knowing precisely what 
is going to happen to him if he does so and gets caught, 
which, of course, is not always the casej despite the in- 
genuity of the means provided for catching him. Upon the 
number of demerits which are received depends first the 
cadet's place in the conduct grades, and second his actual 
status in the Academy. The aggregate of demerits al- 
lowed for each class varies. The fourth-class man who 
has just entered the Academy is permitted to earn twice 
as many as the senior-class man in his last year, before he 
incurs danger of being found deficient in conduct and so 
reported to the Navy Department. If more than these 
are got, the cadet is in peril of being dropped from the 
School, or if he manages to get two thirds of the per- 
mitted total number during the half-year before the semi- 
annual examination he is also in jeopardy. The cadet 
can therefore estimate for himself just how much misbe- 
havior he can afford at any time, and if he is perilously 
near to the limit, he may perceive that a comparatively 
small offence may be sufficient to terminate his connec- 
tion with the Naval Academy. 

The cadet gets these demerits through the medium of 
the intricate police force which I have already described. 
Anybody over him may report him, and that is quite a 
formidable list, for it includes not only those in whose 
immediate charge he may happen to be at a particular 
moment, such as, for example, the captain of his com- 
pany, or the leader of his section, or the cadet in charge 

390 The United States Naval Academy 

of his floor, but any official, cadet or otherwise, who may- 
detect him in the dereliction. The report against hirA 
goes to the Commandant of Cadets in writing. There 
are many officials charged with the making of such re- 
ports on all subjects, and at the end of the day there is 
quite an accumulation of documents to be examined and 
tabulated and a "daily report of conduct" evolved there- 
from, which is the work of the officer of the day. 

The conduct report contains the names of all the 
cadets who are charged with misdemeanor, and a brief 
statement of the offences; and it is read to the battalion 
by the adjutant at morning formation, and posted for 
twenty-four hours, so that all may see it within that 
period. The cadets who have any excuses to offer must 
present them in writing to the Commandant. This they 
are required to do in a precise and definite form, and 
their cases thus being made up, the Commandant pro- 
ceeds to consider them. If he accepts the excuses, that 
is the end of the charge; if not, he awards the proper 
number of demerits, and the report then goes to the 
Superintendent for final confirmation. 

The present system of conduct grades is intended not 
merely to obviate the need of special or additional pun- 
ishments, but also to secure the distribution of privileges 
to those who most deserve them. The result is that it is 
now seldom that a cadet is subjected to confinement on 
the Santee except for some unusual or aggravated offence. 
The members of each class obtain their places in the 
several conduct grades in accordance with the number of 
demerits which they have received during a preceding 
month. Of these grades there are three. 

Discipline and Studies 391 

In addition to this there is a sliding scale for pocket 
money, the allowance of which depends upon the grade 
in which the cadet may be. 

At the end of an academic year marks are assigned for 
conduct in accordance with the number of demerits which 
may have been received; the maximum conduct mark 
being 4, there is subtracted from it a certain proportion 
for every demerit of record. 

It is practically impossible for an undergraduate to 
avoid demerits in some proportion, and so long as they 
are not earned for serious lapses in good behavior or 
wanton infractions of discipline, their effect is little more 
than the temporary loss of privileges and, of course, 
reduction in class standing. 

The distinction between the line of the Navy and 
the engineer corps has been obliterated by law. The 
cadets in the Naval Academy are now all on the same 
footing, and every member in each of the four classes 
pursues the course of study marked out for his class. 
The arrangement of the studies is somewhat variable, 
and is often modified by the Superintendent ; but at the 
present time (1900) there are ten recognized departments 
as follows: 

1. Discipline. 

2. Seamanship. 

3. Ordnance and Gunnery. 

4. Navigation. 

5. Marine Engineering and Naval Construction 

(which includes steam engineering, mechanics, 
and naval construction). 

6. Physics and Chemistry. 

392 The United States Naval Academy 

7. Mathematics. 

8. English and Law. 

9. Languages. 
10. Hygiene. 

The Department of Discipline takes cognizance not 
only of the conduct of the cadet, which is regulated by 
the code of punishments, etc., which has already been 
explained, but also of his efficiency as an officer. If he 
is the leader of a section for recitation, it watches him to 
see how he performs his duties. When he goes to the 
senior class and is assigned as a drill officer, again it takes 
note of his proficiency. Wherever he is put in a position 
of responsibility or command, those immediately over 
him carefully observe his behavior, and express their 
appreciation of it by marking him accordingly. 

The functions of the other departments are to instruct 
the cadet in the several subjects which form their respect- 
ive provinces. Each one of them, with the exception 
of the Department of Physics, is under the presidency of 
a commissioned officer of the Navy. In each department 
also there are a number of assistant professors or instruc- 
tors, the large majority of whom are commissioned officers 
in the Navy. 

So far as the teaching force is concerned, and this in- 
cludes the men who have really made the Naval Acad- 
emy, the single controlling fact is that the institution has 
become self-generating and self-sustaining, in that in all 
its departments it is now mainly controlled by its own 
graduates, and in a comparatively short space of time 
will doubtless be wholly so governed. At the outset, 
and as a matter of course, there were no graduates 

Discipline and Studies 393 

among the instructors. At the present time the propor- 
tion of non-graduates to graduates is only about twenty 
per cent. If the entire lifetime of the School be con- 
sidered, the teaching non-graduates form about thirty-six 
per cent, of all the instructors, and this result is the same 
whether it be based on the aggregate periods of service 
at the Academy or upon the relative numbers of in- 

The proportion of civilian instructors to those holding 
official rank is small, and averages for the entire school 
period a little less than twelve per cent. In some de- 
partments the senior professors, being naval officers, 
change every two or three years. Professor Nathaniel 
M. Terry, the Dean of the corps of professors, on the 
other hand, has presided over the Department of Physics 
for nearly a quarter of a century, and Professor William 
W. Hendrickson, over that of Mathematics for almost as 
long a time. 

' Professor William W. Fay died in 1898, aftermost cred- 
itable and distinguished service in the Department of 
English for thirty-seven years. The oldest instructor at 
the Naval Academy at the present time is Monsieur 
Corbesier, the sword master, a typical " beau sabreur," 
whq won his spurs in Algiers, who has drilled and set up 
fully thirty-five classes of " plebes "; and yet who still 
shows no abatement in the agility of his movements or 
the vigor of his commands. Out of seventy-one civilian 
professors who have served at the Academy, twenty-one 
have held their places more than ten years. On the 
other hand, out of the 430 commissioned officers, gradu- 
ates of the Academy, who have acted as instructors, but 

394 The United States Naval Academy 

seventeen have equalled or exceeded the last-named 

The details of the subjects taught by the several de- 
partments are, of course, constantly changing as progress 
makes necessary. The so-called " professionals," Sea- 
manship, Ordnance, Navigation, and Steam Engineering, 
are imparted with great detail in the most practical 
manner. The cadet is required to do all the duties of 
every grade of seaman and engineer at some time during 
his course, and he serves in every position at the guns, 
and there is no practical problem in navigation which he 
is not called upon thoroughly to understand. In the 
more^ general studies, the course is not as advanced as 
that which one ordinarily finds in colleges of the higher 
grade. In the Department of Mathematics he is carried 
through the differential and integral calculus. The 
curriculum in Physics is quite extensive, and includes a 
short course in practical chemistry. In Mathematics 
the subjects are algebra, geometry, trigonometry, and 
descriptive and analytical geometry. The English De- 
partment does not s'eek to educate the cadet in belles- 
lettres, but rather to give him a good English style 
and a fair knowledge of history, and a sound basis in 
international law on which he may proceed later in life 
to those studies which will keep him from getting into 
trouble with his Government when he undertakes to un- 
ravel knotty questions as to the duties of neutrals and 
the right of asylum. The study of the French language 
is obligatory. Spanish and German may be studied as 
part of an advanced course. The Department of Draw- 
ing deals only with mechanical drawing, and after a 

Discipline and Studies 395 

course in the fundamentals, the cadet is taught how to. 
draw chiefly guns, gun-carriages, and machinery used on 
board ship. Free-hand drawing is no longer taught, 
although it ought to be. 

The advanced courses in the several branches of study 
are permitted only as extensions of the regular course, 
and under many restictions in point of time and qualifica- 
tions. At the present time they are seldom taken, inas- 
much as the cadet has about all he can do to master the 
subjects in the regular curriculum. 

The marking system is the same as has prevailed at 
the Academy from the beginning; and, as already stated, 
the cadet is marked for every recitation which he makes 
by the instructor who hears him. As the instructors are 
constantly shifting around, the cadet will recite to all in 
a given department in a given space of time, so that his- 
average mark is really in a sense the judgment of all the 
professors in that particular department ; and in this way 
any tendency of one professor to mark too high, or 
another to mark too low, finds its compensation. 

There are three sorts of examinations: monthly, semi- 
annual, and annual. The monthly examinations take 
place during the first three or last three days of every 
academic month, excepting January and May, and they 
are limited to the subject-matter studied during the pre- 
ceding month. These are written examinations. The 
academic year is divided into two terms, the first term, 
ending in the latter part of January and the second term 
with the close of the academic year. The semi-annual 
examination occurs at the end of the first term, and the 
annual examination at the end of the second. These 

396 The United States Naval Academy 

examinations may be either written or oral, or both. 
They are conducted with great strictness, and although 
no pledge is required from the cadet in regard to his con- 
duct while in or absent from the examination room, any 
attempt to use unfair means is regarded as a very serious 
matter, and subjects the delinquent not only to severe 
punishment, but inflicts zero as his examination mark. 

The marks given at examinations count quite heavily 
in determining the final standing of the cadet. Thus the 
final mark for any given month is determined by dou- 
bling the mean of his weekly average marks and adding 
thereto the examination mark and dividing by three; 
while the final mark for a term is found by adding the 
mean of the final monthly marks multiplied by three to 
the mark received at examination and dividing the same 
by four. So that it will be seen that the mean of the 
weekly averages in any month combined with the ex- 
amination mark in the proportions indicated, constitutes 
the monthly average for that month, and then the mean 
of the monthly averages for the term combined with the 
semi-annual or annual examination mark constitutes the 
final average for the term, and when the same sub- 
ject continues through both terms, the mean of both 
terms constitutes the final average for the year. This is 
of course somewhat mathematical and not very easy to 
follow, especially when the numeroiis exceptions, which 
are hardly worth stating here, and which are dependent 
upon the number of recitations per month, and so on, are 
also taken into consideration. It is important proof, 
however, that the scholastic work of the cadet is con- 
stantly under just as minute scrutiny as his conduct. 

Discipline and Studies 397 

The net result of all that the cadet does, whether in 
study or in conduct, or in proving his own efficiency as 
ah officer, is found in the merit roll of each class. At 
the annual examinations the final average of each cadet 
is multiplied by the coefficient assigned to each branch 
of study and the sum of the products is the final multiple 
for the year. The names of the cadets are then arranged 
in order according to the common multiple. At the top 
of the Hst are the fortunate youngsters who have achieved 
eighty-five per cent, of the multiple, and who are known 
as the "star men" of their class. They wear stars 
on the collars of their jackets in addition to the anchors, 
and when their names are printed in the Naval Academy 
Register an asterisk precedes them. Then come the 
other members of the class who have successfully passed 
the examination and to whom class numbers are there- 
fore assigned, and finally at the end of the procession are 
those who have been found deficient, or, as they are com- 
monly called, " the bilgers, " and whose further stay in 
the Academy will be by grace of the authorities, if at all. 
These unlucky youngsters are the ones who have not 
succeeded in maintaining an average mark of 2.5, or 62^ 
percent, of the maximum, as a final average for the term 
or year, in some one branch or possibly two or more 

The simple statement of the required average shows 
what the standard of scholarship is that the Naval Acad- 
emy requires. There is nothing discretionary about it. 
The line of demarcation is sharply drawn. A boy with 
an average of 2.6 is safe ; one with an average of 2.4 must 
be reported as deficient, and if so reported his career may 

398 The United States Naval Academy- 
be abruptly ended. His fate is determined by the Aca- 
deniic Board, which is made up of the Superintendent, 
the Commandant, and the heads of the several depart- 
ments in solemn session. If deficiency is reported in 
professional subjects, there is not much hope ; if, on the 
contrary, it is in English or the languages, the Board 
may permit the student to go on with his class ; but there 
is no turning back of the student to begin over again the 
same course with the next ensuing class. He must either 
go on with his own class, or not go on at all. 

No one is ever taken by surprise in these ordeals. The 
student always knows his weekly averages and his monthly 
averages, and if he has fallen in these below the standard 
he is very apt to find his name included in that somewhat 
dismal list which is posted before the examinations and 
which the cadets call the " Maypole " in June and the 
" Christmas Tree " in December. If he do not choose 
to heed these warnings, he knows what his fate will be. 

After the annual examination of each year, the cadets 
proceed aboard the practice ship and go on a cruise, 
which usually lasts until the 28th of August. Sometimes 
it is along the Atlantic coast from the capes of Virginia 
to Gardiner's Bay; sometimes it is extended to Madeira, 
or even to European waters. 

On board the practice ship the cadets do all the duties 
from those of common seamen up to those of ofificers 
of the deck. The members of the junior classes are sent 
aloft to handle sail side by side with the enlisted men, 
of whom there are usually suiificient to keep the vessel 
clean. This is generally their work on their first cruise. 
On their second cruise they are promoted to a little 

Discipline and Studies 


higher position, such as captain of top, boatswain's 
mate, etc., and the third cruise usually carries with it 
still higher place, and the cadet is then required to take 
the trumpet and handle the ship alone, with of course a 
commissioned ofificer watching him to see that he gets 
into no trouble. 

From the author's " Shakings," 1867. 


Wherein the Cadet's Career at the Naval Academy Terminates, 
and his Advent into the Navy as a Commissioned OfBcer 

THE annual examinations in June are dignified by 
the presence of the Board of Visitors, which is 
appointed by the President to inspect everything 
in and about the entire institution. The Board generally 
resolves itself into committees, which attend the several 
section rooms and listen to the recitations, and also wit- 
ness the exhibition drills, of which there is usually one 
of every kind conducted with all necessary formality. 

It is then that the Academy presents its prettiest 
appearance. The lawns are green and the trees are in 
full leaf and the weather is seldom other than perfection. 
The relatives of the graduating cadets generally troop to 
Annapolis, and there is a large contingent of friends from 
near-by cities, so that the grounds present a scene of ani- 
mation very different from their usual quiet throughout 
the rest of the year. 

The cadet's career at the Academy terminates with 
the ceremony of graduation. Usually the battalion is 
paraded and marched into the chapel in military forma- 
tion, there to encounter the Board of Visitors and the 


Graduation and Afterwards 401 

officers of the Academy, and occasionally some high 
officials from Washington, grouped upon the platform. 
The cadets fill the pews on one side of the main aisle, 
and the relatives and friends the pews on the opposite 
side. Some member of the Board of Visitors then makes 
them an address which is traditionally poor. It seems to 
be the impression of the average Visitor that he must 
either indulge in spread-eagle remarks better suited to a 
cross-roads Fourth-of-July oration, or else evolve easy 
platitudes about virtue in general. If the weather is 
stormy, the members of the graduating class then advance 
one by one to receive their certificates of proficiency, and 
that ends the ceremony. But if the weather is fine, as 
it almost always is, the battalion forms on the lawn and 
the Superintendent and frequently the Secretary of the 
Navy take places in front of it. The evolutions of a 
dress parade then go on until the time comes for the ad- 
vance of the commissioned officers, instead of which all 
the members of the graduating class divest themselves of 
their accoutrements, which are at once assumed by the 
class below, and form in line in front of the Secretary and 
Superintendent. They are then given their certificates. 
The moment this is done, the second class, having now 
become the first class, assumes charge of the battalion and 
the senior member of that class calls upon all the cadets 
for cheers " for those about to leave." The graduated 
class in turn then cheers those whom it leaves behind, 
and after that ranks are broken ; and then the cadets have 
a ceremony of their own. The new first-class men im- 
mediately rush to the seats beside the Tripoli Monu- 
ment which hitherto they have not been permitted to 

402 The United States Naval Academy 

occupy, and the fourth-class men, now invested with all 
the dignity of third-class men, likewise take possession 
of the seats on the other side of that monument, and 
assert their right to parade Love Lane. The new second 
class traverses its walk from the Observatory. 

This done, the entire battalion gathers around the " new 
quarters," watching every door, because the members of 
the graduated class have gone therein to doft their student 
uniforms for the last time and to put on the new uniform 
of graduated cadets or else citizen's clothes. As they 
emerge from the building they are promptly seized and 
carried on the shoulders of the shouting and laughing 
crowd to the gates of the Academy. Those who have 
achieved the highest popularity are vigorously cheered. 
There is no escaping this ordeal. It is a sort of hazing 
which the law does not recognize, and indeed even the 
stern authorities; together with a host of visitors, are 
always to be found in a group in front of the building en- 
joying the fun of it. 

Meanwhile, throughout his entire Academy term the 
pay of the cadet has been carefully husbanded for him. 
He has perhaps seen none of it, except the two or three 
dollars a month given him as pocket money, because all 
his wants have been supplied by the store-keeper of the 
Academy upon his written requisition, and the authorized 
prices duly charged to his account by the paymaster. So 
also is his mess bill, amounting to about $22 per month, 
likewise regulated by law and paid for him. He has no 
bills for medical attendance, and even the oiificial dentist 
can charge him nothing but the exact cost of whatever 
gold may be put in his teeth. A zealous care has been 

Graduation and Afterwards 403 

exercised to see that he does not get into debt. Further- 
more, out of his salary $60 per year has been reserved, 
and on his graduation all of this reserve, $240, is given him 
in order to purchase his outfit. At least it is given to him 
for that purpose, but that amount of money in the pocket 
of a youngster suddenly turned loose from restraint, and 
always brimming over with happiness at having at last 
completed the four years' ordeal, is perhaps not alto- 
gether certain to go to the desired end unless some older 
friend is at hand to watch it. Thus he goes home gen- 
erally attended by a coterie of admiring relatives and 
feeling strange in his citizen's clothes. 

At the end of a very brief period, altogether too brief 
to him, he receives a formidable document from the 
Bureau of Navigation directing him to report to the 
commanding officer of some cruiser, possibly at Manila, 
at Valparaiso, at Lisbon, or perhaps at New York, 
which he does, arrayed in his new uniform with the 
single stripe on its sleeves and the anchors on the collar, 
fresh and glittering. Very frequently, he comes aboard 
the ship with the impression that the best and freshest 
knowledge on hand is that which he himself possesses, 
and if he has been a high-ranking cadet officer at the 
Naval Academy, he is very apt to have a notion that he 
is better informed on naval things in general and drills 
in particular than the junior lieutenants and ensigns, 
whose gold lace is somewhat green, buttons tarnished, 
and whose blouses and caps bear the marks of tropical 
suns and winter gales. But he speedily gets disabused 
of that opinion, and after a while drops into his place as 
part of the machinery of the great warship, just as the 

404 The United States Naval Academy- 
graduates of other years preceding him have done ever 
since the Naval Academy has turned them out. 

He finds, however, that his duties are very different 
from those which were exacted of the old midshipman, 
and even unlike those which the midshipman of 
twenty years ago was required to do. There is usually 
no forecastle for him to lord it over, nor any quarter- 
deck such as there was in the old frigates, on the port 
side of which he could parade and Jump to answer the 
calls for the " gentleman of the watch." He is now 
simply the assistant of the officer in charge of the deck, 
and in port, or even at sea during the time when the 
weather is good, may be in charge of the deck himself. 
It is no longer the fashion to send him in charge of 
boats, that work being done by the petty officers; nor 
has he any of that irksome duty which the old midship- 
man had to do in constantly watching the men to prevent 
them from deserting, because the men of the Navy now 
are a very different class from what they used to be, and 
they are treated much better and paid better; and, as a 
consequence, they have as a rule no more desire to de- 
sert than an officer himself. In some of the ships, the 
quarters for the naval cadets are exactly as good as those 
of the ward-room officers. There is no dirty, ill-smelling 
cockpit for them down in the bottom of the ship, for 
they have generally light, comfortable apartments, often 
private staterooms, which they can fit up with silk 
curtains or any other luxury they choose ; all of which 
would strike horror to the very souls of the martinets of 
the " Old Navy " could they come back and look at them. 

In brief, the naval cadet is treated like the educated 

Graduation and Afterwards 405 

officer that he is, and not Hke a cub to be " trodden 
down hke the main tack," which, as we know, was the 
old service estimate of the midshipman, educated or un- 

For two years the cadet stays afloat, and at the end of 
that period, no matter where he may be, he is brought 
back to Annapolis to undergo his final graduating exam- 
ination* Then for the last time the members of his 
class, or what are left of them, get together in Annapolis, 
and for the last time they face the dread Academic Board. 
Meanwhile the officers in command of the ships to which 
they have been attached have watched them and noted 
their bearing and their efficiency, and marked them, as 
usual, on a scale of 4. They have been obliged to keep 
the station bills of the ship or ships in which they have 
served, which show a complete record of the interior 
organization of those vessels. Every bit of navigation 
work which they have done they are required to put 
down in a book — not copies of their work, but the 
original figuring as it was made; and to produce that 
book at the examination. And then, of course, they 
are obliged to keep the time-honored journal. The 
naval cadet not compelled to keep a journal would be 
unthinkable; but the sort of journal which they are re- 
quired to write has improved much with the times, and 
it is expressly prohibited that they shall produce it simply 
by copying the ship's log-books. They are encouraged 
to put into it original descriptions of ships and engines 
and docks and other objects of professional interest, and 
they are marked accordingly by the aid of a formula 
something like that which is used in determining the 

* In 1900, owing to deficiency of officers afloat, cadets were examined at their stations. 

4o6 The United States Naval Academy 

weights of their marks while in the Naval Academy 

They are examined in seamanship and gunnery, navi- 
gation, steam engineering, international law, languages, 
and cruise reports, and in the character ot their navi- 
gation note-book, journal, and station bills; but they 
are not examined in theoretical mathematics, and it will 
be noticed that international law is the only topic in 
English studies in which they are required to be pro- 
ficient. There are coefficients by which the marks at- 
tained in these studies are multiplied, and thus a series 
of maxima is obtained in accordance with which the 
members of the class are, for the last time, given their 
relative standing, which may hereafter remain unchanged 
for their lifetime. This is t.he result of the thousands and 
thousands of daily marks, the scores of monthly marks, 
and the eight examinations and the final examination, 
all blended and combined together. , 

If Congress is in session, the President has the list of 
names of the cadets who are to be promoted ready to 
send to the Senate. Therefore as soon as the report 
comes from Annapolis that Naval Cadet James Jones, 
Jr., with the others of his class, has successfully passed 
the examination, the Senate advises and consents that 
the President bestow on him the rank of ensign. Then 
there comes to the Academy a sheet of parchment, em- 
bellished with national emblems and a big blue seal, 
which informs the universe that the President, reposing 
" special Trust and Confidence " in the " Patriotism, 
Valour, and Fidelity " of James Jones, Jr., appoints him 
an ensign in the Navy; and this the Superintendent 

Graduation and Afterwards 407 

hands to the happy Jones with a cordial expression of 
his pleasure in so doing. 

Off go the gold anchors and narrow stripe from Jones's 
blouse, and the silver anchors and broad band replace 
them ; and then — oh, vainglorious Jones — he cannot resist 
the temptation of venturing, so attired, into the Academy 
grounds. Up go the white-gloved hands of the cadets 
to their caps as Jones approaches them, and the con- 
scious red flashes into his cheeks as he gravely returns 
the salute. 

Hullo, Jones! got your commission, I see. Con- 
gratulate you heartily ! " 

Is that the dreaded Commandant of Cadets just over- 
taking and thus addressing him as " Jones" — in that 
jovially informal manner ? Instinctively his heels come 
together and his hand begins to rise — but it gets no 
farther than the hearty clasp of the veteran, and he finds 
himself with quickened breath trying inarticulately to 
say something which will not come. 

" Jones " — not " Mr. Jones." Now, indeed, he knows 
that he is of the Navy, and that it is not the stern 
arbiter of demerits and discipline who has familiarly 
locked arms with him, as they stroll in the direction of 
the Officers' Club — but only an elder brother. 



Wherein the Present State of the Na7al Academy is Considered, 
and this Yarn Brought to an End 

THE principal buildings of the Naval Academy 
were constructed at different periods and as 
they were needed to meet emergencies. No 
effort was ever made to co-ordinate them in any plan, 
nor was there ever any apparent attempt to secure taste- 
ful architectural design. They are of all patterns from 
a Greek temple to a modern factory, and from an early 
colonial mansion to a latter-day assemblage of flats. 
Those in which the cadets have lived are wretched bar- 
racks built in the cheapest manner, and, at the present 
time, are .dilapidated to the point of danger. The Sea- 
manship building was the first one, erected in 1846, and 
then followed the old chapel, recitation-hall, and Stribling 
Row, finished within the next ten years. The Steam 
building was constructed in 1866, and the so-called 
" new quarters," in which the cadets still reside, despite 
doubtful walls and settling floors, was completed in 
1869. The outlay for some of these was large enough 
to have provided handsome and substantial edifices. 
Others, and especially those of early date, were poorly 


The United States Naval Academy 409. 

built, perhaps because no better could be got with the 
scanty funds which were available. For years these 
structures have been decrepit, the new ones as well as 
the old. Many Superintendents and many successive 
Boards of Visitors have pointed out their condition, but 
without avail. 

At last, in 1895, the Board of Visitors for that year 
united in a report so strongly condemnatory, not merely 
of the buildings alone, but of the whole sanitary system 
of the Academy, which was fast becoming a menace to 
health, that the Secretary of the Navy appointed a com- 
mission of naval officers to survey the place and report 
what ought to be done. 

It is probable that this report, like many another pre- 
ceding it, would have found a tomb in some pigeon-hole 
of the Navy Department, had not Mr. Robert M. 
Thompson, of the class of '68, a member of the Board of 
Visitors before noted, and the ardent promoter of Acad- 
emy athletics, actively interested himself to the extent of 
obtaining from Mr. Ernest Flagg, a well-known New York 
architect, a definite and comprehensive plan for a new 
Naval Academy, which involved not only the removal 
of practically all the existing buildings, but material 
alterations in the topography of the site. This project 
was duly submitted to the official Board of Survey, and 
approved by it ; but no action was taken by the Navy 
Department until 1898, when further deterioration of 
some of the principal edifices rendered their demolition 
imperative. Congress was then asked for an appropria- 
tion of one million dollars for the immediate erection of 
a boat-house, an armory, and a power-house, one half 

41 o The United States Naval Academy 

of the amount to be at once available. Some opposition 
was developed, but the funds were granted; and there- 
upon the Navy Department, having the Thompson-Flagg 
plan above noted already before it, decided to build 
these structures in accordance with its provisions. 

A year later (1899) an appropriation of seven hundred 
and twenty thousand dollars was asked for, being the 
remaining five hundred thousand dollars of the original 
amount, and an additional sum for constructing the 
buildings of granite instead of brick. Opposition in 
Congress again arose, and an effort was made to stop the 
work and relegate the matter de novo to congressional 
committees, charged with opening the whole subject to 
competition among architects, and with the making of 
an elaborate inquiry into the needs of the situation. This, 
however, failed, and the desired amount was appro- 

The original area conveyed to the Naval Academy in 
1845, forming the grounds of Fort Severn, covered only 
about nine acres. The Government property at An- 
napolis now comprises several hundred acres, of which 
the principal plot — and that on which the new buildings 
are to be erected — includes the old site, and has a front- 
age on the bay of 1200 feet and on the river of about 
2400 feet. 

The new Armory and Boat-House are placed parallel, 
and stand endwise toward the harbor, the Boat-House 
being adjacent to the Severn River and the Armory to 
the town. The area between them is to be the new 
parade ground, and remains, as now, open on one side to 
the bay. The area of this parade ground is, however, 

The United States Naval Academy 41 1 

to be so largely increased by filling in land at present 
under water, that old Fort Severn, which is to be pre- 
served and restored to its original state, will be located 
nearly at the centre of the tract. 

The Armory contains a hall 350 feet long and 100 feet 
wide, the floor of which is entirely uninterrupted, and 
around which is a great gallery which will be used as a 
museum for arms, models, etc. In this building will be 
located the offices of the Department of Gunnery, recita- 
tion-rooms, and ordnance repair shops. 

The Boat-House corresponds in size and outward ap- 
pearance to the Armory, is large enough to store the 
practice boats of the Academy, and also has a gallery 
carried around three sides of it. It is to form a museum 
for the Department of Seamanship, as the Armory does 
for the Department of Gunnery. In the building are 
recitation-rooms and a sail-loft, besides the necessary 
offices and repair shops. 

The Power-House is to be erected on a pier jutting 
out into the Severn, and contains the engine- 'and boiler- 
rooms, and the necessary machinery for supplying power 
throughout the grounds. 

The foregoing structures have been provided for by 
Congress as stated. Whether it will authorize the erec- 
tion of the remaining buildings in accordance with the 
proposed plan is to be determined. 

The magnitude of the design and the complete change 
which it makes even in the topographical features of the 
grounds, are abundantly shown in the accompanying 
illustrations. The levels are altered to obtain proper 
sewage downfall, and the conformation of the site 

412 The United States Naval Academy 

becomes more nearly rectangular. The great building 
intended for the cadets' quarters, and which extends be- 
tween the Armory and the Boat-House, connecting with 
both by covered colonnades, divides the whole area trans- 
versely into two sections; that in its rear (harbor side) 
being the enlarged parade ground, while in front lies the 
campus, with its existing lawns and trees preserved, and 
with the other buildings grouped around it. The Quarters 
are the dominating structure ; and as seen from the bay, 
which they overlook, appear to be located on a terrace. 

Next to the Quarters, the most striking feature is the 
basin and amphitheatre; the former being produced on 
the river side by the necessary dredging to obtain the soil 
for filling in, and the latter representing the difference in 
grade between the made land around the basin and the 
old ground of the campus. The amphitheatre has many 
concentric rows of broad steps, whereon a multitude of 
people witnessing athletic sports in the arena or nautical 
exercises in the basin can be accommodated. On the 
river side are two jetties, with lofty beacons on them, 
which partly close the basin. The Boat-House opens 
into it; and the great pier whereon are located the 
Power-House already begun, and the Engineering and 
Storage buildings, forms its western boundary. 

Directly facing the Cadets' Quarters and on the oppo- 
site side of the campus are the Academic building and 
Library, containing the recitation-rooms for the Depart- 
ments of Mathematics, Mechanics, English, Languages, 
Navigation, and Drawing, besides two large lecture-halls, 
and the offices of the Superintendent and his immediate 

The United States Naval Academy 413 

To the southwest lie the Physics and Chemistry 
building, and near it the Gymnasium. Along the town 
side of the grounds are the officers' residences, and in 
front of these the chapel, hospital, and officers' mess- 

The principal room in the Cadets' Quarters is the 
Memorial or Assembly Hall, which is i66 feet long, 58 
feet wide, and 50 feet high. It is intended to contain all 
the naval trophies, tablets, and other memorials now in 
the possession of the Government, and, as its name indi- 
cates, to serve as a general meeting-room. The buildings 
are of granite, and of fire-proof construction. The esti- 
mated cost of all improvements is about eight million 
dollars, in which the amount already appropriated is 

In addition to new buildings, the Academy is in need 
of improved practice ships. The cruiser Bancroft, which 
proved unsuited to the requirements, at least represented 
an effort to give to the cadets a modern steam war vessel. 
After her withdrawal from the Academy, the Mononga- 
hela, a sailing ship, was temporarily used. In 1897, 
Congress directed the construction of the Chesapeake — 
again a full-rigged sailing vessel, the only one of the 
kind added to the Navy in over thirty years, and so of 
an obsolete type. As a marine gymnasium, she is useful 
to a limited extent. Those who regard skill in the 
handling of sail as essential to the naval cadet's education 
— for about the same reasons that led the old-fashioned 
educators to insist that familiarity with the Greek and 
Latin grammars was indispensable to the boy preparing 
for a purely non-professional career — consider that the 

414 The United States Naval Academy 

Chesapeake will meet all necessities. Those who believe 
that the practice ship should bring the cadet face to face 
with conditions like, and not unlike, those which he will 
encounter after leaving the Naval Academy, still hope for 
the provision by Congress of a steam practice cruiser 
which shall exhibit in every detail the latest advances in 
naval warfare ; or, in lieu thereof, the sending of the two 
intermediate classes of cadets to regular cruising vessels 
during the summer months, ah experiment which seems 
abundantly justified by the excellent results following 
the service of the undergraduates in the fleet during the 
Spanish War. 

A graduate of the Naval Academy may join two asso- 
ciations of the Alumni. The Graduates' Association was 
founded in 1886, and meets but once a year at a dinner 
held at the Academy during the graduating exercises in 
June. The gathering is purely a social one. The organi- 
zation is managed by a council and presided over by the 
senior living graduate. A more active organization is 
the Naval Academy Alumni Association of New York, 
which was established in 1897. Its reunions are informal 
" mess dinners," held during the winter in New York 

The requisite professional knowledge of the naval 
ofiScer at the present time probably includes a greater 
variety of attainments than that pertaining to any other 
calling. He must not only be thoroughly versed in sea- 
manship, navigation, and gunnery, which are strictly 
within his profession, but possess an acquaintance with 
branches of learning as widely different from these as the 
technical knowledge of the physician is from that of 

The United States Naval Academy 415 

the lawyer. A recent statute practically requires of him 
the accomplishments of a trained mechanical engineer. 
He must be an admiralty and international lawyer com- 
petent to deal on the spot and at once with grave and 
complicated questions, and to act immediately upon his 
unaided judgment with the prudence and foresight of 
the skilled diplomatist. He must be a competent topo- 
graphical engineer and hydrographer, for the surveying 
and charting of coasts, known and unknown, are ordi- 
nary incidents of his duty. He is called upon to handle 
powerful explosives, therefore adequate chemical know- 
ledge is essential. He is charged with the maintenance 
of the health of bodies of men in tropical climates and 
under abnormal conditions; therefore he must have an 
intelligent comprehension of the laws of hygiene. Where 
contracts are made for guns and armor and ships, he is 
sent to inspect and determine whether or not there has 
been compliance with the contract conditions; therefore 
he must possess sufificient of the special knowledge of the 
metallurgist and the ship-builder to enable him to protect 
the Government. Electricity is rapidly becoming the 
minor motive power in warships; the attainments of a 
competent electrical engineer are already demanded of 
him. The list might be increased. The gravity of his 
responsibility attaches to every item of it ; his failure at 
a critical moment in any particular may mean disaster to 
the nation. 

It is not the function of the Naval Academy to make 
him master of all these subjects. No institution of 
learning within the limited space of time afforded could 
accomplish such a task. It is the function of the Naval 

4i6 The United States Naval Academy 

Academy, however, to give to the cadet a substantial 
groundwork for his future and never-ending studies, and 
to impress upon him the traditions of the Navy, together 
with that high sense of honor and duty which has always 
characterized the service, and which is indispensable to a 
successful career in it. That the means for attaining 
these results shall be the best is directly to the interest 
of the nation. 

The past history of the Naval Academy shows that 
about forty per cent, of the nominated candidates who 
seek to enter the School are eliminated by the examina- 
tion for admission, and of the remainder fifty-five per 
cent, fail to be graduated. The reasons for this state of 
affairs are perhaps sufficiently detailed in the foregoing 

The School was an expedient in the beginning, and a 
precarious one at that. When it essayed to meet the 
new conditions brought about by the great changes in 
naval warfare, it encountered the stubborn opposition of 
the marlinspike sailors. It has been treated seldom 
otherwise than with apathy by Congress, except when 
questions of patronage were at stake, and then the influ- 
ences brought to bear upon it have too often been those 
of the demagogue and petty politician. From the Navy 
Department it has time and again received less considera- 
tion than the smallest navy yard where votes could be 

A total expenditure of eight million dollars in fifty-five 
years is sufficient evidence of the parsimony with which 
pecuniary support has been accorded to it by Congress, 
even if one does not push the comparison still further 

5a<i fompfftrt t^r pir^fiifirt miirer of .-jttiig nt tfif^ltiifeB^iaKs 
iHttSMif .IfoiVmij. and I>k. pawnl tfjr nq^s^C " 

lUiim k[m tfjr JTaKVinif BimrO.prrpnmKirii in (ly lu'ii ijfwscotWSf 

Ju WllU^ Hiil^ftf !P<° low firrriiniii ->rr (inF$aii^^ 
Ooij of ill rfjr ijmr «[«hc 3(^^ 

iiiirifwn'Mnu') mnf f)imOiT(> nnii iwJi^f? 

itrnVpciKViiiT oftfir'4Initf^•?l^u^Jtf)^ ^ 



The United States Naval Academy 417 

and point to the circumstance that the legal interest (six 
per cent.) for one year on a single year's expenditure for 
pensions at the present time is more than the entire 
amount which has been devoted to the support of the 
Naval Academy since its foundation. 

The standards of admission to the Naval Academy 
have been the subject of discussion and controversy for 
years. At the present time they are lower than at any 
other technical school of high standing in the country. 
It is because they are too low that the percentage of 
rejected candidates is so great and the proportion of 
graduates so small. This is paradoxical, but true. If 
such a low standard as now prevails is to represent the 
maximum attainment of the candidate, then he is not 
sufficiently trained, nor does he possess the prima facie 
intellectual capacity, to deal with the subjects which must 
be mastered in the four-years course. If the general 
education of the candidate has gone beyond the standard, 
experience shows that he will be apt to slight the diffi- 
culty of the examination, leave preparation for the last 
moment, and then cram. In any event the character of 
the preparation will always be governed by the standard. 
If the latter be low, the preparation will extend no 
higher; if on a higher level, the preparation will come 
up to it. 

Experience, not only in the Naval Academy, but in 
other schools, demonstrates that the percentage of rejec- 
tions does not increase as the standard is raised, but, on 
the contrary, decreases. To lower the standard in the 
hope of reducing the proportion of rejected candidates, 

has never produced the desired result, and, from the 

4i8 The United States Naval Academy- 
necessities of the case, never will. In order to neutralize 
the effect of cramming and to discover the boy's real 
ability, it has been necessary to make the examinations 
upon the few and simple subjects required to be known 
rigid and severe, and a failure in any one of them fatal. 
A less heroic ordeal would suffice if the standard were 
raised to include a broader and higher range of subjects, 
because a satisfactory estimate of general intelligence 
and attainments might not be inconsistent with inability 
to pass in some one branch of relatively minor import- 
ance. The low standard, therefore, not only does not 
make the entrance examination easier, but just the 

The main argument in support of it has been that the 
Naval Academy is a people's school, to which every 
youth should have access and not be debarred by the 
poverty which may preclude an extensive preliminary 
education. This is pure demagoguery. The Naval 
Academy is a people's school in the best sense when it 
serves the best interests of the whole people, and not 
those of the individual, whether he be rich or poor. It 
is designed to meet a special purpose, namely, the de- 
velopment of competent naval officers — and nothing else. 
It is not a charitable institution. 

Furthermore, the cry of class privilege in this country 
is an anachronism. Practically all of the States offer to 
every boy in the free public schools the preliminary 
education necessary to enable him to meet an adequately 
high standard of entrance examination. If he does not 
choose to avail himself of it, that certainly is no reason 
for impairing the efficiency of the institution. Every 

The United States' Naval Academy 419 

year sees hundreds of students of limited means who 
have prepared themselves to meet the higher standards 
of the private colleges, successfully enter them. The 
boy who has learned his tasks by candle-light after days 
of hard work on the farm in order to get into a college, 
and who maintains himself by the labor of his hands 
while there, is, of all others, the citizen least likely to 
have much patience with the argument that the national 
Academy — merely because it is national — should get 
down to the scholastic level of the individual who has 
neglected the advantages offered by his cross-roads 

The preponderance of opinion throughout the Navy is 
that the course at the Naval Academy should be limited 
to four years, and the present subsequent two years' sea 
service abolished. No advantage is gained which is not 
far more than counter-balanced by the expense and in- 
justice involved. In our modern sailless ships there is 
no longer the need for the midshipman which existed 
in the old Navy; and even such of his duties as now 
survive are mainly performed by the petty officers, who 
are capable and intelligent young Americans, and not 
ancient salts put into their places because of long service. 
Now that the reason for calling the undergraduates 
"naval cadets" has disappeared,— the Academy no 
longer containing a distinct body of students to be 
educated only as engineers,— the old name of midship- 
men might well be restored to them. 

Into the future of the School it is needless to enter in 
further detail. Despite all its troubles in the past, it has 
never failed in the quality of its output; nor so long 

420 The United States Naval Academy 

as its spirit and traditions survive in the Navy will its 
sons deteriorate in either their ability or their devotion. 
Having proved its value for half a century — and under 
conditions when this was no easy task — the Naval Acad- 
emy deserves well of the American people. It asks only 
the provision of such means as will enable it most effi- 
ciently to continue its work in the making of the men 
who in the years to come shall uphold the honor of their 
flag upon the sea. 



From the author's "Shakings," 1867. 



(Up to and Including the Class of 1899) 

THE following roster shows the names of the graduates of 
the United States Naval Academy and the States from 
which they were originally appointed. 

The highest rank in the Navy obtainable in due course of 
seniority promotion is that of rear-admiral; the grades of 
admiral and vice-admiral being created at the will of Congress 
and expiring with the lifetimes of the holders. The names 
of the graduates in the following list who have reached the 
position of rear-admiral, and have thus completed the full 
naval career, have affixed to them the abbreviation " R. 
Adm'l." • 

The rank attained by other graduates in the active service is 
not indicated, as it is in process of constant change. 

The t prefixed to names shows that the holders were the 
senior cadet officers of their several classes or " dates " while 
at the Naval Academy: cadet adjutants before 1865-66, cadet 
lieutenant-commanders afterwards. 

As a matter of course, no list attempting to give a complete 
record of deaths would be accurate but for a time, and there- 
fore detailed information on this point is not included. So far 
as is known, however, of the forty-seven members of the date 
of 1840 — the midshipmen who first came to the Naval School — 
but five now survive. Of these Mr. John Julius Pringle of 
South Carolina is the senior living graduate, and Rear-Admiral 


422 The United States Naval Academy 

Thomas Stowell Phelps (retired) is the senior living graduate 
in the Navy. Out of the 183 members of the famous date of 
1 841, about one fifth remain. The living members of the 
other old " dates " and of the classes which entered the Naval 
Academy during the first fifteen years of its existence bear a 
proportion to their original numbers which, despite all the 
casualties of war and hardships inseparable from naval exist- 
ence, is probably fully as large as, if not larger than, is ordinarily 
found in equal bodies of men of similar age in other callings. 

The senior rear-admiral now in active service is the late 
Superintendent of the Naval Academy, Rear-Admiral Fred- 
erick V. McNair of the class of 1857. Rear-Admiral Francis 
M. Bunce (now retired) is the only other member of that class 
who attained the grade of rear-admiral. 

All of the rear-admirals of the earlier classes have withdrawn 
from active service and are enjoying their well-earned repose 
at their several homes throughout the country. Some of them, 
like Rear-Admiral John G. Walker and Rear-Admiral Henry 
Erben, were on active shore duty, despite their retirement, 
during the Spanish War. As retirement at the statutory age 
of sixty-two years does not by any means imply physical in- 
capacity, the retired officers are, as a rule, a fine, hearty body 
of men; and even the more venerable among them possess a 
degree of youthfulness and vigor seldom found in veterans of 
their years. There is always quite a colony of them residing 
in Washington. Their interest in the service is never abated, 
and their advice and counsel, often most valuable, is fre- 
quently sought by the officials in the Navy Department. 

Admiral George Dewey belongs to the class of 1858, and 
but for his well-merited advancement to the grade of admiral 
— which exempts him from the effect of the retiring law — 
would have terminated his active duty in 1899. 

Of the graduates in civil life there are about five hundred at 
the present time. The careers of most of them are known. 
They have tested the efficiency of a Naval Academy education 
in all professions and callings, and they aver with pardonable 
pride that in their ranks there are no failures. Practically all 
whose years permitted it volunteered for service in the Spanish 

Appendix 423 

War. Many of them were re-commissioned in their old grades, 
and even in higher ones, and astonished their former comrades 
still in the Navy by the ease and readiness with which they re- 
sumed their duties. The project for a National Naval Reserve 
aims to bring these graduates into that organization, so that 
they can be directly utilized in time of war to do such work as 
their abilities may fit them for, especially in the navy yards and 
shore stations, thus enabling an equal number of officers of the 
active Navy to be at once assigned to duty afloat. 

Where all of the graduates of the Naval Academy who have 
remained in the Navy have rendered eminent and faithful 
service, it is almost invidious to particularize; but among those 
who have earned special reputation may be mentioned Rear- 
Admiral Bancroft Gherardi, who commanded the united fleets 
of the Columbian Celebration ; Rear- Admiral John G. Walker, 
now the President of the Isthmian Canal Commission ; Captain 
Alfred T. Mahan, the distinguished historian of the sea power; 
Rear- Admiral John C. Watson, now in command at Manila; 
and Rear-Admiral William T. Sampson, Rear-Admiral Win- 
field S. Schley, and Rear-Admiral John W. Philip, whose 
achievements at Santiago are still fresh in the public mind. 
Commander William B. Gushing, who as a lieutenant earned 
fame for his gallant destruction of the Confederate ram Albe- 
marle, belonged to the class of 1861, and died in 1874. Of 
the officers commanding ships at the battle of Manila, Captain 
Frank Wildes of the Boston and Captain Joseph B. Coghlan of 
the Raleigh belonged to the class which was graduated in May, 
1863; Captain Charles V. Gridley of the Olympia, to the class 
which was ordered into active service in September, 1863; 
Commander Asa Walker of the Concord, to the class of 1866; 
and Commander E. P. Wood of the Petrel, to the class of 

Of the commanding officers who took part in the battle of 
Santiago, Captain John W. Philip of the Texas belonged to 
the class of 1861; Captain Henry C. Taylor of the Indiana 
to the class which was graduated in May, 1863. Captain 
Robley D. Evans of the Iowa, Captain Francis A. Cook of the 
Brooklyn, and Captain Charles E. Clark of the Oregon, to the 

424 The United States Naval Academy 

class which was ordered into active service September, 1863; 
Captain French E. Chadwick of the New York, to the class of 
1864; and Commander Richard Wainwright of the Gloucester, 
to the class of 1868. Naval Constructor Richmond P. Hob- 
son, of Merrimac fame, was graduated No. i in the class of 
1889. Lieutenant John B. Bernadou, who gallantly defended 
the torpedo-boat Winslow and was wounded at Cardenas, be- 
longed to the class of 1880. Lieutenant Victor Blue, who made 
the daring investigation which disclosed the presence of Ad- 
miral Cervera's ships in Santiago harbor, was a member of the 
class of 1887. Lieutenant-Commander Cameron McR. Wins- 
low, whose cable-cutting exploit at Cienfuegos was one of the 
bravest actions of the war, belonged to the class of 1875. 
Lieutenant Philip V. H. Lansdale, of the class of 1877, and 
Ensign John Monaghan, of the class of 1895, were both killed 
while fighting bravely at Samoa; and Ensign Worth Bagley, 
also of the class of 1895, fell at Cardenas. 

Although the Navy offers comparatively little encouragement 
to the inventor, several naval officers have made inventions of 
great importance and value. To Rear-Admiral John A. 
Howell, of the class of 1858, is due the credit of solving that 
apparently insoluble problem of causing a free submarine 
torpedo to guide itself by its own internal mechanism directly 
to its target. For this purpose he used the gyroscope, and 
thus for the first time made the automobile torpedo a reliable 
weapon of war. Commander William H. Driggs, of the class 
of 1869, devised the projectiles and guns which bear his name, 
besides a variety of other gunnery contrivances of great in- 
genuity. Commander Seaton Schroeder, '68, Lieutenant- 
Commander Frank F. Fletcher, '75, and the late Assistant 
Naval Constructor Robert B. Dashiell, '81, have all made 
notable inventions in ordnance material. Lieutenant Joseph 
Strauss, of the class of 1885, is the inventor of the two-story 
turret, first introduced on the newly constructed Kearsarge. 
Lieutenant Francis Haeseler, of the class of 1880, rearranged 
the loading mechanism of the guns in the turrets of the Texas 
so as practically to double their efficiency. He has devised 
a most ingenious breech mechanism for great guns, besides a 

Appendix 425 

multitude of other valuable devices. Lieutenant-Commander 
Bradley A. Fiske, of the class of 1874, has contributed materi- 
ally toward making gunnery more accurate by the invention 
of his telescopic sight and his apparatus for determining the 
enemy's distance, and Commander William H. Beehler, of the 
class of 1868, is the inventor of the solarometer for finding a 
ship's position at sea. 

Among the graduates in civil life who have achieved high 
reputations are Professor Ira N. Hollis of Harvard University, 
who was graduated No. i in the class of 1878; Mr. Lewis 
Nixon, No. i of the class of 1882, now the head of the Crescent 
Ship Yard, and one of the leading naval constructors of the 
country; Mr. Frank J. Sprague, of the class of 1878, who suc- 
cessfully developed the electric railway in the United States; 
Captain Jacob W. Miller, of the class of 1867, now the com- 
manding officer of the Naval Militia of the State of New York 
and the principal founder and promoter of that organization; 
Mr. Joseph L. Stickney, of the class of 1867, for many years 
naval editor of the New York Herald, and now a famous war 
correspondent; Mr. Winston Churchill, of the class of 1894, 
whose successful novel, Richard Carvel, mainly owes its origin 
to his sojourn as a cadet a^ Annapolis; the Rev. Cyrus Town- 
send Brady, of the class of 1883, whose sea-novels dealing 
with the war of 18 12 have created new interest in our naval 
history; Colonel Robert M. Thompson, of the class of 1868, 
President of the Orford Copper Company, whose untiring 
efforts in behalf of the Naval Academy have already been 
noted in the preceding pages; Professor Albert A. Michelson, 
of the class of 1873, one of the eminent physicists of the coun- 
try, whose investigations into the velocity of light, conducted 
at the Naval Academy, are now classic; and Mr. Louis Duncan, 
of the class of 1880, formerly Professor of Electricity, etc., at 
John Hopkins University, and now a leading electrical engi- 
neer. Messrs. S. Nicholson Kane, who was graduated No. i 
in the class of 1866, and Mr. William Butler Duncan, Jr., of 
the class of 1881, are both famous yachtsmen, and both re- 
turned to the Navy and rendered excellent service during the 
Spanish War. 

426 The United States Naval Academy 


Aulick, Richmond, Virginia 
■Savage, Robert, North Carolina 
Marr, Robert A., Virginia 
Jeffers, William Nicholson, New 

Austin, William Downes, Massachu- 
Pringle, John Julius, South Carolina 
Brinley, Edward, New Jersey 
Simpson, Edward, New York (R. 

Temple, William Grenville, Ver- 
mont (R. Adm'l) 
Welsh, George P., Pennsylvania 
Carter, Samuel P., Tennessee (R. 

Nelson, William, Kentucky 
Smith, William Henry, Virginia 
McArann, Robert M., Pennsylvania 
Aby, Charles W., Mississippi 
Dyer, Charles, Connecticut 
Stout, Edward C, Iowa 
Brand, Frederick B., Louisiana 
Harris, Reuben, Ohio 
Walcutt, John, Ohio 
McCauley, James B., Pennsylvania 
I'helps, Thomas Stowell, Maine (R. 

Madigan, John, Maine 

Warley, Alexander F. , South Car- 
Denniston, Garrit V., New York 
Paulding, Leonard, New York 
Stevens, George A., Tennessee 
Conover, Francis Stevens, Iowa 
Elliott, Samuel B., Pennsylvania 
Gregory, Francis, Connecticut 
Barrett, Edward, Louisiana 
Terrett, Colville, Indiana 
Bennett, John W., Maryland 
Davidson, Washington F., Virginia 
Wager, Peter, Pennsylvania 
Hall, John P., Ohio 
Blake, Homer C, Ohio 
Wells, Clark Henry, Pennsylvania 

(R. Adm'l) 
Quackenbush, Stephen Piatt, New 

York (R. Adm'l) 
English, Earl, New Jersey (R. 

Waddell, Charles, Iowa 
Ochiltree, David, North Carolina 
Bradford, Joseph M., Alabama 
Lowry, Reigart B. , Pennsylvania 
Wheelock, Frederick P. , New York 
Carter, Jonathan H., North Caro- 
McLaughlin, Augustus, Arkansas 


Wilkes, John, Jr., New York 
Parker, William Harwar, Virginia 
Jackson, Alonzo C, New York 
Dekoven, William, Connecticut 
Jones, John Pembroke, Virginia 
McDermut, David A., New York 
Buckner, William P. , Arkansas 
Morgan, George E., New York 

Lowe, William W., Massachusetts 
Bridge, William King, Maine 
Griffen, Samuel P., Georgia 
Law, Richard L., Indiana 
Willcox, William Henry, Connecti- 
Denny, Ebenezer D., Pennsylvania 
Barraud, John T., Virginia 



Roney, Thomas, Maryland 
Upshur, John H., Virginia (R. 

Bayard, Charles C, Delaware 
Philip, John Van Ness, New York 
Franklin, Samuel R., Pennsylvania 

(R. Adm'l) 
Smith, Marshall J., Virginia 
Hanson, John J. , District of Colum- 
Clarke, Francis G., Maine 
Price, Richard J. D., Maryland 
Gillis, Walter V., District of Colum- 
Whiting, William D., Massachu- 
Powell, William L., District of 

Phelps, Seth Ledyard, Ohio 
McCauley, Edward Y., Pennsyl- 
vania (R. Adm'l) 
Walker, Theodoric L. , Tennessee 
Mitchell, William, District of 

Roe, Francis Asbury, New York (R. 

Smith, Joseph B., Maine 
Murdaugh, William H., Virginia 
Brooke, John M., Virginia 
Gibson, William, Pennsylvania 
Cook, Joseph J., Alabama 
Armstrong, James, Virginia 
Renshaw, Edward, New Jersey 
Danels, Joseph D., Maryland 
Latimer, Charles, District of Colum- 
Walker, John T., Ohio 
De Krafft, John Charles Philip, 

Ohio (R. Adm'l) 
McCollum, John Van, Illinois 
Hart, John E., Illinois 
Badger, Oscar C, Pennsylvania 
Harris, Thomas C, Pennsylvania 
Kell, John Mcintosh, Georgia 

Davis, John Lee, Indiana (R. 

March, J. Howard, New York 
Weaver, William H., Virginia 
Semmes, Alexander A., Maryland 
Thornton, James S., New Hamp- 
Stewart, John B. , North Carolina 
Jones, Merriwether Patterson, Vir- 
Smith, Watson, New Jersey 
Wainwright, Thomas B., South 

Debree, Alexander M., Virginia 
De Haven, Joseph E. , Kentucky 
Coleman, David, North Carolina 
Selden, Edward A., Vermont 
Somerville, James H., Maryland 
Habershaw, Alexander Wylie, 

Hoffman, William G., Maryland 
Murphy, John McLeod, New York 
Truxton, William T., Pennsylvania 
Wilson, John K., Maryland 
Friend, Joseph J., Virginia 
Cilley, Greenleaf, Maine 
Crabb, Horace N., Pennsylvania 
Magaw, Samuel, Pennsylvania 
Rochelle, James, Virginia 
Minor, Robert D., Missouri 
West, William C, New York 
Van Zandt, Nicholas H., District of 

Woolley, Charles Woodruff, Ken- 
Dallas, Francis G., Massachusetts 
Bassett, Simon S., District of 

Monroe, Andrew F., Kentucky 
West, Nathaniel T., Massachusetts 
Duvall, Robert C, North Carolina 
McCorkle, David Porter, Pennsyl- 
Reily, William, Maryland 

428 The United States Naval Academy 

Hopkins, Charles F., Georgia 
Hare, George H., Pennsylvania 
Jones, Walter F., Virginia 
Hunter, Henry C, Delaware 
Bliss, Sylvanus J., Massachusetts 
Holmes, William W., Connecticut 
Shyp, William, Jr., Virginia 
Waddell, James Iredell, North 

Gamble, William Marshall, New 

Young, Jonathan, Illinois 
Broadhead, Thomas W., New 

Mayo, William K. , Virginia 
Young, Thomas, Virginia 
Grain, Walter O. , Louisiana 
Byrens, Allen T., Ohio 
Jouett, James E., Kentucky (R. 

Fillebrown, Thomas Scott, Maine 
Fry, Joseph, New York 
Lyne, Leonard H., Kentucky 
Grafton, Edward C., Massachusetts 
Haxtun, Milton, New York 
Selden, Robert, Virginia 
Wilkinson, William W., South 

Allmand, Albert, Virginia 
Stuart, Robert, New York 
Sheperd, Edmund, Virginia 
Lee, Theodoric, Alabama 
Bier, George H., Maryland 

Watmough, Pendleton G. , Pennsyl- 
Young, George W. , New York 
Van Wyck, William, Maryland 
Russell, John H., Maryland (R. 

Stone, Edward E. , Georgia 
Eaton, Thomas C, Maine 
Mercer, William R. , Maryland 
Phenix, Dawson, Maryland 
Van der Horst, Elias, South Carolina 
Lewis, Robert F. R., Missouri 
McGary, Charles P., North Carolina 
Hunter, Henry St. George, Virginia 
Davidson, Hunter, Virginia 
Johnson, Andrew W., District of 

Luce, Stephen Bleecker, New York 

(R. Adm'l) 
Simes, George T., New Hampshire 
Maury, Jefferson, Virginia 
Forrest, Dulany A., Virginia 
Gray, Charles, Delaware 
Harrison, Gustavus, Jr. , District of 

Scott, Robert Wainwright, Tennes- 
Fauntleroy, William H., Virginia 
Thomas, William R., North Caro- 
Deslonde, Adrian, Louisiana 
Queen, Walter W., New York (R. 


Carter, Robert R., Virginia 
McLane, Allen, Delaware 
Henry, Edmund Wilkes, New York 
King, George S., Michigan 

Langhorne, John Devall, Kentucky 
Hunter, Charles C, Vermont 
Seawell, Joseph A., Virginia 




Houston, Thomas Truxton, Penn- 

Chandler, Ralph, New York (R. 

Hamilton, John Randolph, Ala- 


f Carnes, Edwin O. , Ohio 

Parker, James, Ohio 

Johnson, Philip Carrigan, Maine 

Watters, John, Michigan 

Breese, Kidder Randolph, Rhode 

Johnson, Oscar F., Tennessee 
Kimberly, Lewis A., Illinois (R. 

j Brodhead, Edgar, New York 

Kennon, Beverly, Indiana 
Breese, Samuel Livingston, Illinois 
Smith, Charles B., Missouri 
Morris, George Upham, New York 
Gray, Edwin F., Texas 
Sproston, John Glendy, Ohio 
Gherardi, Bancroft, Massachusetts 

(R. Adm'l) 
Braine, Daniel L., New York (R. 



Brose, Benjamin F., Ohio 
f Wood, John Taylor, Kentucky 
Newman, L. Howard, New York 
Thorburn, Charles Edmonston, 

Bowen, Richard T., Ohio 
Flusser, Charles W., Kentucky 
Lovell, William S., New York 
Eggleston, John R., Mississippi 
Cummings, Andrew Boyd, Pennsyl- 

Hand, Bayard E., Georgia 
Belknap, George Eugene, 

Hampshire (R. Adm'l) 
Williams, Edward P., Maine 
Mygatt, Jared P. K., Ohio 


Rainey, John D., Mississippi 
Harmony, David B., Pennsylvania 

(R. Adm'l) 
Gwin, William, Indiana 
Cornwell, John Jacob, Ohio 
Foster, James P., Indiana 
Totten, Washington, New York 
Wilson, Henry, New York 
Benham, Andrew Ellicott Kennedy 

New York (R. Adm'l) 
Chapman, Robert T., Alabama 
Campbell, William P. A., Ten- 
McGunnegle, Wilson, Missouri 
Irwin, John, Pennsylvania (R. 

43° The United States Naval Academy 


Skerrett, Joseph S., Ohio 
Greer, James A., Ohio (R. Adm'l) 
Greene, Charles H., Ohio 
Baker, Francis H., New Hamp- 
Hester, Isaac W., Tennessee 
Spedden, Edward T., Missouri 
Owen, Elias K., Illinois 
Glassell, Wilham T., Alabama 
Weaver, Aaron Ward, Ohio (R. 

Johnston, John E., Missouri 
Pendergrast, Austin, Kentucky 

Fyffe, Joseph P., Ohio (R. Adm'l) 
McCann, William P., Kentucky 
Stillwell, James, Ohio 
Heileman, Julius G., Vermont 
f Blake, Joseph Davidson, North 

Oakley, Eugene H., Illinois 
Gillis, James H., Pennsylvania 
Bruce, James, Massachusetts 
Livingston, De Grasse, New York 
Fitzhugh, William E., Ohio 
Abbott, Trevett, Massachusetts 


■fLoyall, Benjamin Pollard, Indi- 
Cushman, Charles H., Maine 
Stanton, Oscar Fitzalan, New York, 

(R. Adm'l) 
f Cheever, William Harrison, Min- 
Adams, Henry A., Jr., Pennsyl- 
Brown, George, Indiana (R. Adm'l) 
Hawley, Charles E., New York 
Taylor, Bushrod B., Indiana 
Ward, William Henry, Ohio 
May, Robert L., New York 

Dunnington, John W., Kentucky 
Garland, Hudson M., Michigan 
Shirk, James W., Pennsylvania 
Morrison, George F., Ohio 
Taylor, Jesse, Tennessee 
Maxwell, James G., Pennsylvania 
Erben, Henry, New York (R. 

Shepperd, Francis Edgar, North 

Pelot, Thomas Postell, South Caro- 
McCrea, Edward Price, Wisconsin 
Stockton, Edward C, New Jersey 


Walker, John Grimes, Iowa (R. 

Mitchell, John Gardner, Massachu- 

f Ramsay, Francis Monroe, Penn- 
sylvania (R. Adm'l) 

Peck, Charles F., Illinois 

Meade, Richard Worsam, California 

(R. Adm'l) 
Izard, Allen Cadwallader, South 

Campbell, Marshall C, Mississippi 



Boyd, Robert, Maine 

Thomas, Calvin Francis, New York 

Carpenter, Charles Carroll, Massa- 
chusetts (R. Adm'l) 

McCartney, Andrew Jackson, Penn- 

Kirkland, William Ashe, North 
Carolina (R. Adm'l) 

Dana, William H., Ohio 

Potter, Edward Eells, Illinois 

Bacon, George, New York 

Chaplin, James Crossan, Pennsyl- 

Dozier, William Gaillard, South 

Beardslee, Lester Anthony, New 
York (R. Adm'l) 

Bradford, William L., Alabama 

Babcock, Charles A., Michigan 

Armstrong, ^neas, Georgia 




Selfridge, Thomas Oliver, Jr., Mas- 
sachusetts (R. Adm'l) 
Cain, John, Jr., Indiana 
Miller, Joseph N., Ohio (R. Adm'l) 

Todd, James Madison, Massachu- 

Barnes, John Sanford, Massachu- 

Stribling, John M., South Carolina 


Law, George E., Indiana 
Porcher, Philip, South Carolina 
Graham, Richard W. M., New 

Lull, Edward Phelps, Wisconsin 
Hopkins, Alfred, New York 
Matthews, Edward Orville, Missis- 
sippi (R. Adm'l) 
Buchanan, Thomas McKean, Penn- 

Sicard, Montgomery, New York (R.. 

Lea, Edward, Tennessee 

Norton, Charles Stuart, New York,, 
(R. Adm'l) 

Dalton, Hamilton Henderson, Mis- 

Crossman, Alexander Foster, Penn- 


Harris, Joseph Whipple, Massa- 
Cooke, Augustus Paul, New York 
Phythian, Robert Lees, Kentucky 

Porter, Thomas Kennedy, Tennessee- 
Wallace, Rush Richard, Tennessee 
Eastman, Thomas Henderson, New- 

432 The United States Naval Academy 

Evans, William E., South Carolina 
Bradford, Robert Forbes, Massa- 
Allen, Weld Noble, Maine 
Fitch, Leroy, Indiana 
Bigelow, George A. , Illinois 
Hatfield, Chester A., New York 
Shyrock, George S., Kentucky 

Blodgett, George M., Vermont 
Moseley, James C, Mississippi 
Gove, Oilman D., New York 
Green, Nathaniel, Pennsylvania 
McDougall, Charles F., Pennsyl- 

Perkins, George H., New Hamp- 


f Blake, Francis B. , Pennsylvania 
Alexander, Joseph W. , North Caro- 
Todd, Henry Davis, New York 
Graves, Charles J., Georgia 
Pritchett, James M., Indiana 
Terry, Edward, Connecticut 
Wilson, Byron, Ohio 
Mills, Thomas B., Alabama 

Bunce, Francis M., Connecticut (R. 

Kelly, John W., Pennsylvania 
Seeley, Henry B., New York 
McNair, Frederick Vallette, Penn- 
sylvania (R. Adm'l) 
Yates, Arthur R., New York 
Miller, Henry W., New Jersey 
Merchant, Clarke, Massachusetts 


Reed, Allen Victor, New York 
Howell, John Adams, New York 

(R. Adm'l) 
Franklin, Charles Love, Ohio 
•|-Howison, Henry Lycurgus, In- 
diana (R. Adm'l) 
Dewey, George, Vermont (Admiral) 
Bishop, Joshua, Missouri 
White, George B., Pennsylvania 

Blue, Henry Martin, New Jersey 
Furber, Edward G. , Ohio 
Whittle, William C, Virginia 
May, Luther C, Tennessee 
Storrs, George Strong, Alabama 
Kerr, William A., North Carolina 
Grimball, John, South Carolina 
Kautz, Albert, Ohio (R. Adm'l) 


fHall, Wilburn Briggs, Louisiana 
Mahan, Alfred Thayer, New York 
Averett, Samuel Woolton, Virginia 
Remey, George Collier, Iowa (R. 

Mackenzie, Alexander Slidell, New 

Farquhar, Norman von Heldreich, 

Pennsylvania (R. Adm'l) 
Greene, Samuel Dana, Rhode Island 



Claiborne, Henry Ballatin, Louis- 
Swasey, Charles Henry, Massachu- 
Borchert, George A., Georgia 
Kane, Theodore Frederick, New 

Smith, Beatty Peshine, New York 
Schoonmaker, Cornelius M a r i u s. 
New York 

Cenas, Hilary, Louisiana 
Prentiss, Roderick, Indiana 
McCook, Roderick Sheldon, Ohio 
Hackett, Samuel Holland, Pennsyl- 
. vania 

Wiltse, Gilbert Crandall, New York 
Spencer, Thomas Starr, Connecticut 
Butt, Walter Raleigh, Washington 


Stuyvesant, Moses Sherwood, Ohio 
Wharton, Arthur Dickson, Tennes- 
Marvin, Joseph Dana, Ohio 
O'Kane, James, Indiana 
Gillett, Simeon Palmer, Indiana 
Swann, Thomas Laurens, Maryland 
-{•Domin, Thomas Lardner, Virginia 
Ames, Sullivan Dorr, Rhode Island 
Watson, John Crittenden, Kentucky 

(R. Adm'l) 
Taylor, James Langhome, Virginia 
Robeson, Henry B. , Connecticut 

(R. Adm'l) 
McNair, Antoine Reilke, Connecti- 

Barton, William Henry, Jr., Mis- 
Brown, Samuel Francis, Maryland 
Manley, Henry De Haven, Pennsyl- 
Whitehead, William, Pennsylvania 
Walker, Edward Augustus, Massa- 
Schley, Winfield Scott, Maryland 

(R. Adm'l) 
Harrison, Thomas Locke, Virginia 
Hoole, James Lingard, Alabama 
Paddock, Samuel Barnet, Ohio 
Hoge, Francis Lyell, Virginia 
Casey, Silas, New York (R. Adm'l) 
Read, Edmund Gaines, Virginia 
Read, Charles William, Mississippi 


-fSampson, William Thomas, New 
York (R. Adm'l) 

Snell, Alfred Titus, Massachusetts 

Stewart, William Francis, Pennsyl- 

Ryan, George Parker, Massachu- 

Bache, George Mifflin, Pennsylvania 

Dexter, Adolphus, Ohio 
Phoenix, Lloyd, New York 
Bowen, Thomas Corwin, Ohio 
Steece, Tecumseh, Ohio 
Cromwell, Bartlett Jefferson, Ne- 
braska (R. Adm'l) 
Hayward, George Washington, Wis- 

434 The United States Naval Academy 

McKay, Charles Edmund, New 

Philip, John Woodward, New York 
(R. Adm'l) 

Picking, Henry Ferry, Pennsylvania 
(R. Adm'l) 

Rodgers, Frederick, Maryland (R. 

Davenport, Francis Olmstead, Mich- 

MuUan, Horace Edward, Kansas 

Weidman, John, Pennsylvania 

McGlensey, John Franklin, Penn. 

Backus, Sylvanus, Michigan 

Gushing, William Barker, New 

Merriman, Edgar Clarence, New 

Sturdivant, Theodore, North Caro- 

King, Charles Kirby, District of 

Spencer, Julian Murray, Maryland 

Carnes, William W., Tennessee 



(Ordered into Active Service May, 1861.) 

Preston, Samuel William, Illinois 
Lamson, Roswell Hawkes, Oregon 
Forrest, Moreau, Maryland 
Brower, Edwin Tracy, Pennsylvania 
Smith, Frederick Robinson, Maine 
Tyson, Herbert Benezet, Pennsyl- 
vania . 
Huntington, Charles Lathrop, Illi- 
Blake, Elliott Craig Vore, Ohio 
Kempft, Louis, Illinois 
Thomas, Nathaniel Winslow, Massa- 
Duer, Rufus King, New Jersey 
Rowland, John Henry, Kentucky 
Nichols, Smith Woodward, Massa- 
Huntington, Robert Palmer, In- 
Sumner, George Watson, Kentucky 

(R. Adm'l) 
Robertson, James Patterson, Penn- 

Higginson, Francis John, Massa- 
chusetts (R. Adm'l) 
McFarland, John, Pennsylvania 
Carrothers, John Kellem, Illinois 
Mitchell, Archibald N., Illinois 
Zimmerman, Charles William, 

Crall, George Augustus, Ohio 
Graham, James Duncan, Illinois 
McCarty, Stephen Austin, New 

Day, Benjamin Franklin, Ohio (R. 

Tallman, Henry Curtis, New York 
Benton, Mortimer Murray, Ken- 
Mason, Alexander Macomb, Minne- 
Howard, George Augustus, Tennse- 

Moore, Thomas Longworth, North 

Foreman, Ivey, North Carolina 
Littlepage, Harden Beverly, Virginia 


(Ordered into Active Service May, 1861.) 


McCormick, Alexander Hugh, Texas 

(R. Adm'l) 
Bridgman, William Ross, Iowa 
Barker, Albert Smith, Massachusetts 

(R. Adm'l) 
Cotton, Charles Stanhope, Wisconsin 
Wallace, James, lovira 
Blake (Blood),Charles FoUen, Massa- 
Sanders, Morton Wilson, California 
Alexander, Adam Clendenin, Ohio 
Anderson, John, Ohio 
Johnson, Mortimer Lawrence, 

Lowry, Philip Wager, Pennsylvania 
Adams, La Rue Perrine, New York 
Batcheller, Oliver Ambrose, New 

Reed, John Henry, Michigan 
Naile, Frederick Irvin, Pennsylvania 
Pearson, Frederic, Pennsylvania 
Hazeltine, Edward Clarence, New 

Bartlett, John Russell, Rhode Island 
Johnson, Henry Lewis, Vermont 
Porter, Benjamin Horton, New 

Humphrey, Charles Henry, New 

Miller, Merrill, Ohio 
Shepard, Edwin Malcolm, New York 
Hunt, Symmes Harrison, Indiana 
Brown, George Montgomery, Con- 

French, Hayden Tilghman, Indiana 
Read, John Joseph, New Jersey 
Haswell, Gouverneur Kemble, New 

Rumsey, Henry Barlow, Indiana 
Chew, Richard Smith, District of 

Preble, Edward Ernest, Maine 
Blake, Henry Jones, Massachusetts 
Terry, Silas Wright, Kentucky 
Kellogg, Edward Nealy, Illinois 
Woodward, Edwin Tully, Vermont 
Tracy, Charles Wurts, Pennsylvania 
Abbott, Walter, Rhode Island 
Wemple, David Duane, Wisconsin 
Bradley, John, New York 
Wood, George Washington, Penn- 
Grafton, Henry Trenchard, Arkan- 
Haskins, Benjamin Franklin, New 

Jones, Charles Davies, Ohio 
Claybrook, Joseph Payton, Missouri 
Floyd, Richard Samuel, Tennessee 
Camm, Robert Alexander, Virginia 
Chew, Francis Thornton, Missouri 
Holt, Henry Clay, Tennessee 
Mason, William Pinckney, Virginia 
McDermott, Edward J., Texas 
Jackson, William Congreve, Virginia 
Carroll, Daniel, Maryland 
Worth, Algernon Sidney, New York 
Trigg, Daniel, Virginia 


Glass, Henry, Illinois 
Dichman, Ernest Jefferson, Wis- 

McGregor, Charles, Illinois 
Maclay, William Walter, New 

436 The United States Naval Academy 

t Cooper, Philip Henry, New York 
Harris, Ira, New York 
Taylor, Henry Clay, Ohio 
Brown, Allan Danvers, New York 
Niles, Marston, New Jersey 
Wadleigh, George Henry, New 

Clark, John Duvall, New York 
D'Orleans, Pierre, France 
Crowninshield, Arent Schuyler, New 


Pegram, John Combe, Kentucky 
Craven, Charles Henderson, Maine 
Wildes, Frank, Massachusetts 
Hendrickson, William Woodbury, 

Kellogg, Augustus Greenleaf, Illi- 
Coghlan, Joseph Bullock, Illinois 
Sands, James Hoban, Maryland 
Stirling, Yates, Maryland 

1864, TWENTY- 

(Ordered into Active Service September, 1863.) 

Wise, William Clinton, Kentucky 
Clark, Lewis, Connecticut 
Harrington, Purnell Frederick, Del- 
Dunn, Williamson, Indiana 
Rathbone, Clarence, New York 
Cassell, Douglas Reynolds, Ohio 
Hoff, William Bainbridge, Pennsyl- 
Wheeler, William Knox, New York 
Dana, William Starr, New York 
Evans, Robley Dunglison, Utah 
Ludlow, NicoU, New York (R. 

Cook, Francis Augustus, Massachu- 
Chester, Colby Mitchell, Connecti- 
Wright, Arthur Henry, Ohio 
Clark, Charles Edgar, Vermont 

Barclay, Charles James, Pennsyl- 
Gridley, Charles Vernon, Michigan 
Morris, Francis, New York 
Sigsbee, Charles Dwight, New York 
Leary, Richard Phillips, Maryland 
Van Vleck, William Aaron, New 

Pendleton, Charles Henry, Ken- 
Whiting, William Henry, Wisconsin 
McClure, George McCuUy, Penn- 
Mullan, Dennis Walbach, Maryland 
Coffin, George William, Massachu- 
Davis, George Thornton, Massachu- 
Irvin, Roland Clare, Pennsylvania 
Glidden, George Dana Boardman, 


Goodrich, Casper Frederick, Con- 
Caldwell, Albert Gallatin, Indiana 
Kennedy, Charles William, Wiscon- 

McCaHa, Bowman Hendry, New 

Chadwick, French Ensor, West Vir- 

Baker, Samuel Houston, Arkansas 



Jewell, Theodore Frelinghuysen, 

Schmitz, Charles Florenz, Indiana 
Armentrout, George William, Indi- 
Woodrow, David Clarence, Ohio 
f White, Henry Chaplin, New York 
Wilson, Thomas Simples, California 
Sheppard, Francis Henry, Missouri 
Stedman, Edward Marshall, Massa- 
Kennett, John Coburn, Missouri 
Folger, William Mayhew, Ohio 
Elmer, Horace, New Jersey 
Lamberton, Benjamin Peffer, Penn- 
Schouler, John, Massachusetts (R. 

Weaver, James Bready, Pennsyl- 
Dickins, Francis William, Connecti- 
Wilde, George Francis Faxon, Mas- 
Davis, Charles Henry, Massachu- 
Train, Charles Jackson, Massachu- 
Flagg, George Newell, Vermont 
White, Edwin, Ohio (R. Adm'l) 
Heyerman, Oscar Frederick, Michi- 
Raebel, Herman Charles, Ohio 
Pigman, George Wood, Indiana 
Wilson, Samuel Lewis, Ohio 
Menzies, Gustavus Vasa, Kentucky 



Converse, George Albert, Vermont 
f Hendrix, Fremont Murray, Mis- 
Bradford, Royal Bird, Maine 
Breed, Cyrus Williams, Ohio 
Barber, Francis Morgan, Ohio 
Noel, Jacob Edmund, Pennsyl- 
Black, Charles Henry, Delaware 
Griswold, Charles Deming, Ver- 
Hubbard, Socrates, Missouri 
De Long, George Washington, New 

Chenery, Leonard, California 
Rowe, Edward Verplanck, New 

Lyons, Timothy AugustilS, Minne- 
Amory, Edward Linzee, at large 
Newell, John Stark, New York 
Hunter, Godfrey Malbone, District 
of Columbia 

Craig, Joseph Edgar, New York 
Belrose, Louis, Virginia 
Fletcher, Arthur Henry, Ohio 
Talcott, George, Ohio 
Thomas, Charles Mitchell, Pennsyl- 
Baird, Samuel Probasco, Indiana 
Snow, Albert Sidney, Maine 
Reiter, George Cook, Pennsylvania 
Graham, Wallace, Maryland 
Bell, David Negley, Indiana 
Hitchcock, Roswell Dwight, New 

Brownson, Williard Herbert, New 

Nichols, Henry Ezra, New York 
Gwinner, Henry Wyncoop, Mis- 
souri ' 
Mead, William Whitman, Kentucky 
Parker, Francis Hamilton, New 

Ford, l/Cighton Melville, Pennsyl- 

438 The United States Naval Academy 

Wilson, Thomas Peckham, New 

Elliott, William Henry, Indiana 
Hooker, Richard Campbell, New 

Houston, Edwin Samuel, Pennsyl- 
Long, Benjamin Edes, New York 
Gove, Francis Mills, New Hamp- 
Book, George Milton, Pennsylvania 
Thomas, Eugene Beauharnais, Ohio 
Longnecker, Edwin, Pennsylvania 
Vaughan, John Alexander, Pennsyl- 

Buford, Marcus Bainbridge, Ken- 

Impey, Robert E., Ohio 
Ide, George Elmore, Ohio 
Vail, Abraham Holman, Indiana 
Wilson, Josiah Mann, Indiana 
Perry, Thomas, New York 
Stockton, Charles Hubert, Pennsyl- 
White, Oscar, Ohio 
Kingsley, Louis Albert, Connecti- 
Ragsdale, James Knox Polk, Texas 
Hazlett, Isaac, Ohio 


f Kane, Samuel Nicholson, Rhode 

Sprague, Albert Leander, New 

Maynard, Washburn, Tennessee 
Cutts, Richard Malcolm, District o£ 

Lyon, Henry Ware, Massachusetts 
Dayton, James Henry, Indiana 
Walker, Asa, New Hampshire 
Mackenzie, Morris Robinson Slidell, 

New Jersey 
Totten, George Mansfield, New 

Sperry, Charles Stillman, Connecti- 
Courtis, Frank, California 
Watts, William, New York 
Reisinger, William Wagner, Mary- 
Rich, John Contee, Delaware 
Burwell, William Turnbull, Mis- 
Hunker, John Jacob, Ohio 
Soley, John Codman, Massachusetts 

Wisner, Henry Clay, Michigan 
Little, William McCarty, New York 
Field, Maunsell Bradhurst, New 

Hanford, Franklin, New York 
Roben, Dougfass, Ohio 
Griffen, Robert Nichols, Pennsyl- 
Baldy, George Albert, Michigan 
Crocker, Frederick William, Massa- 
Berry, Robert MaUory, Kentucky 
Stewart, David Arthur, Missouri 
Blair, Andrew Alexander, Missouri 
Very, Samuel Williams, Massachu- 
Davis, Daniel Wagner, Pennsyl- 
Williams, Theodore Sturtevant, 

Iowa " 
Judd, Charles HoUis, New York 
Peck, Ransome Byron, Missouri 
Terrell, Thomas Coke, Indiana 
Bicknell, George Augustus, Indiana 
Taft, John Manton, Rhode Island 



Clarkson, Samuel Floyd, New York 
Day, Murray Simpson, Massachu- 
Manney, Henry Newman, Minnesota 
Wilson, Horatio Rankin, New Jer- 
McCormick, Frederick, Maryland 
Phillips, Charles Lex, Pennsylvania 
Morse, Jerome Edward, Massachu- 
Todd, Chapman Coleman, Ken- 
Waterman, Rufus, Rhode Island 
Norris, George Albert, Maine 
Phelan, John Rogers, Pennsylvania 
Moore, William Irwin, Virginia 
Parker, William Harwar, Virginia 
Richards, Benjamin Sayre, Pennsyl- 
Morris, Isaac Tompkins, New York 
McKee, Hugh Wilson, Kentucky 
TurnbuU, Frank, New Mexico 
Talbot, John Gunnel, Kentucky 
Hemphill, Joseph Newton, Ohio 
Lillie, Abraham Bruyn Hasbrouck, 
New York 

Swinburne, William Thomas, Rhode 

Woodman, Edward, New Hamp- 

Carter, Abiel Beach, New Jersey 

Whelen, Henry, Iowa 

Housel, Louis Vastine, Pennsyl- 

McCormack, Emmet, Ohio 

Emory, William Hemsley, District 
of Columbia 

Hutchins, Charles Thomas, Penn- 

Ackley, Seth Mitchell, Massachusetts 

Lisle, Richard Mason, Pennsylvania 

Mcllvaine, Bloomfield, Pennsyl- 

Gill, Clifford Belcher, New Hamp- 
shire ' 

Coster, George Washington, Jr., 
New York 

Gillpatrick, William Wilberforce, 

Yates, Isaac I., New York 

Spalding, Lyman Greenleaf , at large 

Arnold, Charles Fiske, New York 


Tilley, Benjamin Franklin, Rhode 

Knox, Harry, Ohio 
fCollins, Frederick, Maine 
Simons, Sydney Augustus, New York 
Stickney, Joseph Louis, Illinois 
Frailey, William Bryan Hart, Son 

of Officer 
Paul, William Melville, Massachu- 
Meeker, Cornelius Reid, Wisconsin 
Webster, Lewis Dana, Illinois 
Shaw, Charles Pierson, Virginia 

West, Clifford Hardy, New York 
Merrell, Joseph Porter, Michigan 
Eaton, Joseph Giles, Massachusetts 
Church, George Hurlbut, New Jer- 
McGunnegle, William Starr, Mis- 
Belknap, Charles, New York 
Henricks, Edward William, Indiana 
Jaques, William Henry, New Jer- 
Gilmore, Fernando Padilla, Ohio 
Hunter, Henry Christie, New York 

44° The United States Naval Academy 

Davol, George Stephen, Massachu- 
Leutze, Eugene Henry Cozzens, at 

Sebree, Uriel, Missouri 
Benjamin, Park, Jr., New York 
Couden, Albert Reynolds, Utah 

Mitchell, George Justice, Louisiana 
Sullivan, John Thomas, New York 
Howes, Frederick Alvah, New York 
Pendleton, Edwin Conway, Son of 

Clay, George Goodhue, Michigan 
Swift, Willie, Connecticut 
Mansfield, Henry Buckingham, 

Hyde, Frederick Griswold, Con- 
Carmody, Robert Emmet, New York 
Williams, George Morris, New York 
Heald, Eugene De Forest, Maine 
Symonds, Frederick Martin, New 

Wainwright, Jonathan Mayhew, Son 

of Officer 
Christopher, Charles William, Ohio 
Hagenman, John William, Pennsyl- 
Wood, Edward Parker, Ohio 
Goodwin, Walton, Maine 
Jacob, Edwin Samuel, Virginia 
Ross, Albert, Pennsylvania 
Boyd, Arthur Allen, New York 
Miller, Jacob William, New York 
Clover, Richardson, New Jersey 
Bridge, Edward William, New York 
Miller, James Madison, Missouri 
Little, William, Pennsylvania 
Meigs, John Forsyth, Pennsylvania 
Wise, Frederick May, Maryland 
Nicholson, William Drake, New 

Bleecker, John Van Benthuysen, 
Son of Officer 

Brown, Charles Eaton, Massachu- 
Dunlap, Andrew, New York 
Rush, Richard, Pennsylvania 
Nichols, Frank William, Massachu- 
Gheen, Edward Hickman, Pennsyl- 
Field, Wells Laflin, New York 
Cunningham, Patrick Thomas, Illi- 
Jones, Horace Eugene, Indiana 
McClellan, Edward Percival, New 

Logan, Leavitt Curtis, Ohio 
Paine, Frederick Henry, New York 
Arnold, Conway Hillyer, Son of 

Sturdy, Edward William, Maine 
Very, Edward Wilson, Washington 

Perkins, Hamilton, New Hamp- 
Cowles, William Sheffield, Connecti- 
Greenleaf, Frederick William, Min- 
Paul, Allan Gill, Rhode Island 
Craven, Alfred, New York 
Remey, Edward Wallace, Iowa 
Grimes, James Matthew, Illinois 
Cowie, James Walker, Iowa 
BoUes, Matthew, Massachusetts 
Taussig, Edward David, Missouri 
Pillsbury, John Elliott, at large 
Dennison, Erasmus, Ohio 
Foree, Alfred, Kentucky 
Reeder, William Heron, Iowa 
Delano, Francis Henry, Ohio 
English, Henry Clarence, Illinois 
Delehanty, Daniel, New York 
Colby, Harrison Gray Otis, Massa- 
AUibone, Charles Olden, New Jer- 




f Comwell, Charles Carpenter, New 

York ■ 
IngersoU, Royal Rodney, Michigan 
Brown, Robert Matthew Gay, West 

Manx, Adolphus, Iowa 
Kennedy, Duncan, Jr., New York 
Kelley, James Douglas Jerrold, at 

Moser, Jefferson Franklin, Pennsyl- 
Stone, Charles Allston, Pennsyl- 
Tremain, Hobart Levi, South Caro- 
Thompson, Robert Means, Penn- 
Rodgers, Raymond Perry, Son of 

Wyckoff, Ambrose Barkley, Illinois 
Derby, Richard Catton, Idaho Ter- 
Jasper, Robert . Thompson, New 

Schroeder, Seaton, South Carolina 
Smith, Huntington, Indiana 
Upton, Frederick Eugene, Maine 
Palmer, Lambert Gittins, Sou of 

Drake, Franklin Jeremiah, New 

Mason, Theodorus Bailey Myers, 

Smith, Jesse Bishop, Vermont 
Chipp, Charles Winans, New York 
Elliot, Alfred, South Carolina 
Barnes, Nathan Hale, Illinois 
McLean, Thomas Chalmers, New 

Barnette, William Jay, New York 
Forse, Charles Thomas, Kentucky 

Stinson, Hubert Clarence, Maine 
Noyes, Boutelle, Virginia 
Cowgill, Warner Mifflin, Delaware 
Moore, Edwin King, Ohio 
Sharrer, Washington Oursler, Mary- 
Wadhams, Albion Varette, New 

Doty, Webster, Wisconsin 
Wood, Theodore Talbot, New Jer- 
Tyler, George Whittelsey, Louisiana 
Irvine, John Caledon, Illinois 
Crumbaugh, Samuel Redford, Ken- 
Roosevelt, Nicholas Latrobe, New 

House, Jerome Bonaparte, New- 
Beehler, William Henry, Maryland 
McElroy, Horace, Wisconsin 
Uhler, William Edward, Pennsyl- 
Jarboe, Charles William, Maryland 
Bower, George Kremer, Pennsyl- 
Adams, James Dexter, Missis- 
De Blois, Thomas Amory, Georgia 
Woart, William, Maine 
Wainwright, Richard, Son of Officer 
Selfridge, James Russell, California 
Welch, Charles Paine, Mississippi 
Robinson, John Buchanan, Pennsyl- 
' vania 

Adams, Charles Albert, Wisconsin 
Everett, William Henry, Connecti- 
Norton, Charles Frederick, Colorado- 
Hawley, John Mitchell, Massachu- 

442 The United States Naval Academy 

Ames, Samuel, Jr., Rhode Island 
Stevens, Thomas Holdup, Son of 

McMechan, Andrew Charles, Ne- 
Cogswell, James Kelsey, Wisconsin 
Lee, Thomas Nisbet, District of 

Rodgers, John Augustus, Son of 

Carlin, James William, Illinois 
Adams, George Kossuth, New York 
Wallace, George Chandler, Indiana 
Hull, James Cooper, New York 
Etting, Theodore Minis, Pennsyl- 
Blocklinger, Gottfried, Iowa 

Garst, Perry, Illinois 
Singer, Frederick, Ohio 
Speyers, Arthur Bayard, New York 
Seymour, Charles, Oregon 
Prime, Ebenezer Scudder, Ohio 
Tallman, Hamilton Morrison, New 

Parsons, Arthur Herbert, Ohio 
Perkins, Francis Wilkinson, Con- 
Fletcher, James Rankin, Tennessee 
Copp, Charles Albert, Naval ap- 
Strong, William Couenhoven, Son 

of Officer 
Niles, Nathan Errick, Pennsylvania 
Day, Edward Maynard, Louisiana 


Bray, Charles Durlin, Rhode Island 

Gates, George Shattuck, Massachu- 

Main, Herschel, District of Colum- 

Trevor, Francis Nathaniel, New 

Skeel, Theron, New York 

Stevenson, Holland Newton, New 

Symmes, Frank Jameson, Massa- 

Ford, John Quincy Adams, New 

Purdie, Charles Freebody, New 

Ogden, Julian Sinclair, New York 
Rae, Charles Whiteside, New York 
Kearney, George JIammekur, New 

Peck, John Brownell, Rhode Island 
Godfrey, Jones, Massachusetts 
Moore, William Sturtevant, Massa- 
Foss, Cyrus Davis, Massachusetts 
Steel, James, Wisconsin 
Howell, Charles Philetus, New 


•f Perkins, Charles Plummer, Massa- 
Wiley, Edwin Hardin, Illinois 
Richards, H. Melchior Muhlenberg, 

Paine, Sumner Cummings, Maine 
Buckingham, Benjamin Horr, Ohio 
Bixler, Louis Edward, Pennsylvania 
Kimball, William Wirt, Son of Of- 



Brown, Charles Rufus, New Hamp- 
Harber, Giles Bates, Ohio 
Curtis, Clinton Kidd, West Vir- 
Potter, William Parker, New York 
Hobson, Joseph Brittain, Iowa 
Briggs, John Bradford, Massachu- 
Bowman, Charles Grimes, Indiana 
Field, Edward Augustus, Connecti- 
Turner, William Henry, Ohio 
Thackara, Alexander Montgomery, 

Garvin, John, Ohio 
Wilson, John Clark, New York 
Bassett, Fletcher Stewart, Illinois 
Handy, Henry Overing, Massachu- 
Mason, Newton Eliphalet, Pennsyl- 
Osborn, Arthur Patterson, Ohio 
Harris, Uriah Rose, Indiana 
Winslow, Herbert, Son of Officer 
Berwind, Edward Julius, Pennsyl- 
Niles, Kossuth, Illinois 
Bimey, Frank Case, Son of Officer 
Arthur, Elliott John, Vermont 
Patch, Nathaniel Jordan Knight, 

Rohrer, Karl, Missouri 
Delehay, William Edward Baker, 

Franklin, James, Maryland 
Norris, John Alexander, Pennsyl- 
Milligan, John, Ohio 
Davenport, Richard Graham, Geor- 
Day, William Plummer, Naval ap- 
Ruschenberger, Charles Wister, Son 
of Officer 

Bolles, Timothy Dix, Arkansas 
Bulkley, William Franklin, Ne»v 

Bradbury, Charles Augustus, Ver- 
Colvocoresses, George Partridge, 

Son of Officer 
Clarke, Charles Ansyl, Iowa 
Nickels, John Augustine Heard, 

Nazro, Arthur Phillips, Massachu- 
Mahan, Dennis Hart, Son of Oflficer 
Wright, George Francis, Illinois 
Barry, Edward Battevant, Son of 

Driggs, William Hale, Michigan 
Hull, Frederick Byron, Michigan 
Moore, John Henry, New York 
Comly, Samuel Pancoast, New Jer- 
Stuart, Daniel Delehanty Vincent, 

New York 
Houston, Nelson . Townsend, New 
' York 

Blanchard, Horace Augustus, Mas- 
Breck, Richard Axtell, Massachu- 
Negley, William Clark, Pennsyl- 
Macfarlane, Edward Overton, Penn- 
Kellogg, Wainwright, Pennsylvania 
Taunt, Emory Herbst, Pennsyl- 
Coffin, John Huntington Crane, 

Son of Officer 
Wallis, John Purnell, Maryland 
Longnecker, Henry Clay, Pennsyl- 
Monahon, Henry Titus, Naval ap- 
Phelps, Thomas Stowell, Jr., Son of 

444 The United States Naval Academy 

Colahan, Charles Ellwood, Fennsyl- 

Hadden, William Armstrong, Penn- 

Graydon, James Weir, Indiana 

Stockton, Henry Trautmafi, Penn- 

Berry, Albert Cleaves, at large 
Low, William Franklin, New- 
May, Sidney Harvey, New Hamp- 
Mitchell, Richard, Massachusetts 
Hall, Martin Ellsworth, Iowa 


f Dyer, George Leland, Maine 
Peck, Robert Grosvenor, Massachu- 
Rittenhouse, Hawley Olmstead, 

New Jersey 
Schaefer, Henry William, Illinois 
Hubbard, John, Arizona 
Baker, Winfield Scott, Indiana 
Fickbohm, Herman Frederick, Na- 
val apprentice 
Mayer, William Godfrey, Ohio 
Murdock, Joseph Ballard, Massa- 
Briggs, Charles, Rhode Island 
Danenhower, John Wilson, Illinois 
Heilner, Lewis Cass, Pennsylvania 
McCrackin, Alexander, Iowa 
Harris, Henry, Illinois 
Graham, Samuel Lindsey, Pennsyl- 
Post, Joel Arthur, New York 
Calhoun, George Allen, Naval ap- 
Kunhardt, Charles Philip, Pennsyl- 
Holliday, Walter Sterling, Wiscon- 
Keeler, John Dowling, Indiana 
Reamey, Lazarus Lowry, Pennsyl- 
Rees, Corwin Pottenger, Ohio 
Jacoby, Harry Muhlenburg, Penn- 

Hughes, Edward Merritt, at large 
Wood, William Maxwell, Jr., Indiana 
Collins, John Bartholomew, Louis- 
Hunker, Jacob John, Ohio 
Wright, Miers Fisher, Pennsylvania 
Hyde, Marcus Darius, Washington 

Lyman, Charles Huntington, Ohio 
Nye, Haile Collins T., Ohio 
Sargent, Nathan, Montana Terri- 
Holman, George F. Warren, Cali- 
Spencer, Thomas Corry, Son of Of- 
Remsen, William, New York 
Conway, William Priest, Kentucky 
Vreeland, Charles Edward, Naval 

Ray, Whitmul Pope, Indiana 
Leach, Boynton, New York 
Merriam, Greenlief Augustus, Mas- 
Jouett, Landon Preston, Kentucky 
Crosby, Freeman Hopkins, New 

Richman, Clayton Scott, Iowa 
Augur, John Preston Johnston, Son 

of Officer 
Osterhaus, Hugo, Missouri 
Emmerich, Charles Franklin, Dis- 
trict of Columbia 



Dimock, Martial Campbell, Naval 

Abbott, John Strong, Wisconsin 
Centsch, Ferdinand Henry, Ohio 
Penington, Henry Rowan, Delaware 
Kilburn, Willie, California 
Salter, Timothy Gardner Coffin, 

Naval apprentice 
Sawyers, James Henry, Kentucky 
Bull, James Henry, Pennsylvania 
Van de Carr, William Henry, New 

Tyler, Hanson Risley, Vermont 
Milliman, Anson Briggs, Naval ap- 

Utiey, Joseph Henry, Illinois 
Gore, James Moorehead, Son of Of- 
Green, Henry Loomis, New York 
Milton, John Brown, Kentucky 
Ludlow, Francis Louis, New York 
Dillingham, Albert Caldwell, Penn- 
Mentz, George William, New Jer- 
EUery, Frank, Jr., Son of Officer 
Porter, Theodoric, Son of Officer 
Winslow, Francis, Son of Officer 
McDonald, Colin, Ohio 


f Staunton, Sidney Augustus, West 

Terrell, Charles, Kentucky 
Thomas, Chauncey, Pennsylvania 
Crandall, Albert Alonzo, Minnesota 
Ward, Aaron, Pennsylvania 
Bartlett, Charles Ward, Massachu- 
Busbee, Perrin, North Carolina 
Irwin, William Manning, Ohio 
Nabor, Frank Work, Ohio 
Dabney, Albert Jouett, Kentucky 
Calkins, Carlos Oilman, Ohio 
Clason, William Paine, Rhode 

Roller, John Emil, Naval apprentice 
■Cresap, James Cephas, Ohio 
Greene, Francis Emerson, Indiana 
Hunsicker, Joseph Leslie, Pennsyl- 
Barrolf, Henry Harris, Missouri 
Elliott, William Power, at large 
McCrea, Henry, Indiana 
•Qualtrough, Edward Frank, New 

Hanus, Gustavus Charles, Wisconsin 
Bruns, Christopher L., New York 
Mcintosh, Horace Parker, Indiana 
Freeman, Julius Caesar, Illinois 
Wood, Thomas Clark, New York 
Lefavor, Frederick Herbat, Ohio 
Barber, Joel Allen, Wisconsin 
Selden, George Lord, Connecticut 
French, Walter Seba, Maine 
Sewell, William Elbridge, New 

Stevens, Robert Dunn, New York 
Babcock, William Carmi, Kansas 
Downes, John, at large 
Marshall, William Alexander, Penn- 
Wight, James Marshall, Michigan 
Cobb, Alphonso Harmon, Michigan 
Guertin, Frank, Wisconsin 
Vail, George Andros, New York 
Galloway, Charles Douglas, Mary- 
Seabury, Samuel, Naval apprentice 
Foster, Charles Alexander, Minne- 
. sola 

446 The United States Naval Academy 

Wilson, Downes Lorraine, at large 
Sanderson, George Andrew, Ohio 
Baker, Asher Carter, Iowa 
Plunkett, Thomas Smyth, at large 
Burnett, Jeremiah Cutler, Indiana 

Edson, John Trace/, at large 
Slack, William Hall, at large 
Masser, William Henry Eyre, Penn- 


Freeman, Albert Thorp, New Jer- 
fSoutherland, Wm. Henry Hudson, 

Naval apprentice 
Roper, Jesse Mims, Missouri 
Fox, Charles Eben, at large 
James, Nathaniel Talbot, at large 
McLean, Robert Hamilton, Naval 

Schwenk, Milton Klinger, Colorado 

Heacock, William Crawford, New 

Thompson, Charles Albert, Louis- 
Medary, Jacob, at large 
Fletcher, Robert Howe, at large 
Fremont, John Charles, Jr., at 

Rinehart, Benjamin Frank, Penn- 
Gait, Rogers Harrison, at large 
Miles, Charles Richard, Utah Ter- 
Mertz, Albert, Wisconsin 
Lowry, Oswin Welles, Ohio 
Lyeth, Clinton Hofiman, West Vir- 
Hotchkin, Frank Seymour, New 

Cottman, Vincendon Lazarus, New 

Lasher, Oren Earl, New York 
Waring, Howard Scott, Naval ap- 
Winlock, James Henry, Kentucky 
Sawyer, Frank Ezra, Massachusetts 
Baker, Daniel Foster, at large 


fSchuetze, William Henry, Missouri 
Deering, Charles William, Maine 
Fowler, Gilbert, Massachusetts 
Howard, Thomas Benton, at large 
Cowles, Walter Cleveland, Connecti- 
Knight, Austin Melvin, Florida 
Diehl, Samuel Willauer Black, 

Badger, Charles Johnston, at large 
Michelson, Albert Abraham, at 

Young, Lucien, Kentucky 
Nicholson, Reginald Fairfax, North 

Underwood, James Porter, Michigan 
Wilner, Frank Adams, New York 
Tyler, Frederick Halsey, Michigan 
Morrell, Henry, New York 
Putnam, Charles Flint, Illinois 
Underwood, Edward Beardsley, at 

Case, Augustus Ludlow, Jr., at 




Halsey, William Frederick, Louis- 

Shufeldt, Mason Abercrombie; Con- 

Lemly, Samuel Conrad, North Caro- 

Winder, William, New Hampshire 

Muse, Thomas Ennalls, Maryland 

Robinson, John Marshall, at large 
Bean, John Ward, North Carolina 
Reynolds, Alfred, Indiana 
Moore, Charles Brainard Taylor, 

Matsmulla, Zun Zow, Japan 
Veeder, Ten Eyck DeWitt, New 



Leitch, Robert Rose, Maryland 
Cleaver, Henry Tyson, Pennsyl- 
Wooster, Lucius Winslow, New 

Barton, John Kennedy, Pennsyl- 
Denig, Robert Gracy, Ohio 


fPeters, George Henry, Pennsyl- 
Fiske, Bradley Allan, Ohio 
Holmes, Frank Huntington, Cali- 
Wegmann, Albert, New York 
Stewart, John William, Indiana 
Reich, Henry Frick, Pennsylvania 
Flynne, Lucien, Texas 
Hutchins, Hamilton, New Hamp- 
Noel, York, Pennsylvania 
Parker, John Frederick, Ohio 
Reynolds, Matthew Givens, Mis- 
Colwell, John Charles, at large 
Whitfield, William Edmund, Ar- 
Rooney, William Reed Alexander, 

Dorn, Edward John, Missouri 
Fuller, Edward Chapman, Ohio 
AUderdice, Winslow, Virginia 
Hutter, George Edward, Virginia 
Nostrand, Warner Hatch, New York 
Scott, Bernard Orme, Alabama 
Arms, Lyman, Michigan 
Milligan, Frank John, Tennessee 
Haskell, Charles William, Iowa 
Reynolds, Edwin Lewis, New Jer- 
Farnsworth, John, Illinois 
Bowyer, John Marshall, Iowa 
Nicholson, John Ormond, Alabama 
Emmons, George Thornton, at 

Peacock, David, New Jersey 
Danner, Frederick William, Ala- 

448 The United States Naval Academy 


Mattice, Asa, New York 

Ransom, George Brinkerhoff, New 

Eaton, William Colgate, New York 
Hoffman, Frank Jacob, Maryland 
Canaga, Alfred Bruce, Ohio 
Zane, Abram Vanhoy, Pennsylvania 

Edwards, John Richard, Pennsyl- 

Warren, Benjamin Howard, Massa- 

Willitts, Albert Bowen, Pennsyl- 

Potts, Stacy Pennsylvania 


Hodgson, Albon Chase, Georgia 
Amsden, Charles Heath, Ohio 
■fWinslow, Cameron McRae, at 

Helm, James Meredith, Tennessee 
Cutler, William Gifford, at large 
Corbin, Clarence Arthur, Michigan 
Carter, Fidelio Sharps, Illinois 
Coffin, Frederick Wesley, Massa- 
Hosley, Harry Hibbard, New 

Laird, Charles, Ohio 
Hughes, Walter Scott, Iowa 
Usher, Nathaniel Reilley, Indiana 
Hodges, Harry Marsh, Illinois 
Fletcher, Frank Friday, Iowa 
Daniels, David, Massachusetts 
Sharp, Alexander, Jr., District of 

Wood, Moses Lindley, Missouri 

Townley, Richard Henry, Nebraska 
Bostick, Edward Dorsey, South 

Worcester, George Henry, New 

Shearman, John Adams, New York 
Beatty, Frank Edmund, Minnesota 
Doyle, Robert Morris, Tennessee 
Smith, James Thorn, North Caro- 
McCartney, Charles Michael, Penn- 
Howe, Alfred Leighton, Pennsyl- 
Hunt, Henry Jackson, at large 
Collins, Frank Sheldon, at large 
Hunt, Ridgley, Louisiana 
Vinton, Frederick Betts, New York 
Caperton, William Banks, Tennes- 
Stoney, George M., Alabama 


Bailey, Frank Hughes, New York 
Cowles, William, New York 
Willitts, George Sidney, Pennsyl- 

Cathcart, William Ledyard, Penn- 

Worthington, Walter Fitzhugh, 



Little, William Nelson, Georgia 
Warburton, Edgar Townsend, 

BurgdofE, Theodore Frederick, New 

King, William Richard, Maryland 
Freeman, Edward Russell, Missis- 
Babbitt, George Henry Thomas, 


Eldridge, Frank Harold, Ohio 
Kleckner, Charles, Pennsylvania 
De Ruiz, Alberto, Pennsylvania 
Loomis, Edmund Underwood, 

Boggs, William Brenton, District of 


Brown, Stimson Joseph, New York 

Gearing, Henry Chalfant, Pennsyl- 

fFoulk, George Clayton, Pennsyl- 

Walling, Bums Tracy, Ohio 

Potts, Templin Morris, at large 

Allen, William Herschell, Illinois 

Sears, James Hamilton, New York 

Jenkins, Stephen, New York 

Winch, Thomas Garfield, Ohio 

Boush, Clifford Joseph, Virginia 

Katz, Edward Marc, Wisconsin 

Rogers, Charles Custis, Tennessee 

McLean, Walter, at large 

Mayo, Henry Thomas, Vermont 

Culver, Abraham Ellis, New York 

Reynolds, Lovell Knowles, Alabama 

Varnum, William Lahy, Pennsyl- 

Henderson, Richard, North Caro- 

Pond, Charles Fremont, Connecticut 

Rollins, Anthony Wayne, Kentucky 

Ray, Robert Clary, at large 

Newton, John Thomas, Ohio 


Rose, Waldemar d' Arcy, at large 
Gillmore, James Clarkson, Arizona 

Jardine, Augustus Edward, at large 
Case, Daniel Rogers, at large 
Mallory, Stevenson Blount, Virginia 
Chambers, Washington Irving, New 

Sherman, Francis Howland, Mis- 
Gove, Charles Augustus, at large 
Piepmeyer, Louis William, at large 
Coffman, De Witt, Virginia 
Tappan, Benjamin, Arkansas 
Proudfit, John McLean, at large 
Minett, Henry, Kentucky 
Hannum, George Gangwere, Penn- 
Mulligan, Richard Thomas, New 

Hogg, William Stetson, at large 
Fisher, Elstner Nelson, Pennsyl- 
Wise, Edward Everett, at large 
Griffin, Thomas Dillard, Virginia 
Braunersreuther, William, Illinois 

Dunning, William Batey, New York 
Stivers, Henry Hicks, New York 

Reid, Robert IngersoU, Pennsyl- 

45° The United States Naval Academy 


fFullam, William Freeland, New 

Witzel, Horace Mark, Wisconsin 
Dodge, Omenzo George, Kansas 
David, William Glenn, New York 
Winterhalter, Albert Gustavus, 

Jeffries, Alfred, Texas 
Orchard, John Madison, Missouri 
Bronaugh, William Venable, Ken- 
Paris, Russel Clark, New York 
Taylor, Hiero, Illinois 
Jordan, John Newell, Maine 
Fechteler, Augustus Francis, New 

Brumby, Thomas Mason, Georgia 
Brice, Jonathan Kearsley, Ohio 
Wright, Edward Everett, Massachu- 
Bostwick, Frank Matteson, Wis- 
Woodworth, Selim Edward, at large 
Gleaves, Albert, Tennessee 
Constant, Walter Maibee, Maryland 
Nelson, Valentine Sevier, Tennessee 
Oliver, James Harrison, Georgia 
Dodd, Arthur Wright, Indiana 

Wakenshaw, Harry Charles, New 

Parker, James Phillips, North Caro- 
Hodges, Ben Ward, Mississippi 
Grant, Albert Weston, Wisconsin 
Rogers, Henry Horace, Illinois 
Denfeld, George William, Massa- 
Dunn, Herbert Omar, Rhode Island 
Halpine, Nich. J. Lane Trowbridge, 

New York 
Case, Frank Blair, Michigan 
Toppan, Frank Winship, Massa- 
Dombaugh, Harry Mason, Ohio 
Heath, Frank Rives, at large 
Lansdale, Philip Van Horn, at large 
Benson, William Shepherd, Georgia 
Werlich, Percival Julius, Wisconsin 
Rush, William Rees, Louisiana 
Harrison, Horace Wellford, at large 
Hall, Alfred Lovell, Ohio 
Burdick, William Leslie, Ohio 
Johnson, Henry Abert, at large 
Cook, Simon, Missouri 
Katz, Koroku, Japan 
Kunitomo, Giro, Japan 


f Fillmore, John Hudson, Illinois 
Rodgers, Thomas Slidell, at large 
Quinby, John Gardner, at large 
McClain, Charles Sumner, Indiana 
Glennon, James Henry, California 
Knapp, Harry Shepard, Connecti- 
Sprague, Frank Julian, Massachu- 

Smith, Roy Campbell, Virginia 
Rodgers, William Ledyard, Califor- 
Wood, Albert Norton, Indiana 
Huse, Harry McLaren Pinkney, 

New York 
Ormsby, George Francis, Ohio 
Atwater, Charles Nelson, New York 
Lloyd, Edward, Jr., Maryland 



Holcombe, John Hite Lee, Georgia 
Hughes, Richard Morris, Pennsyl- 
Bibb, Peyton Benajah, Alabama 
Wright, Robert Kemp, Pennsylvania 
Kimmell, Harry, Pennsylvania 
Biddle, Spencer Fullerton Baird, at 

Ryan, Thomas William, Pennsylva- 
McDonnell, John Edmund, Nevada 
Caniield, William Chase, at large 
Stafford, George Henry, Iowa 

White, William Porter, at large 
Clark, George Ramsey, Ohio 
Sparhawk, George, Massachusetts 
Craven, John Eccleston, at large 
Shipley, John Harry, Missouri 
Rogers, Allen Grey, North Carolina 
Knapp, John Joseph, Missouri 
Todd, Wilson Lemuel, Pennsylvania 
Hooke, Horatio Hill, Illinois 
Hetherington, James Henry, Iowa 
Dent, Baine Caruthers, at large 
Almy, Augustus Craven, at large 


HoUis, Ira Nelson, Kentucky 
Schell, Franklin Jacob, Pennsylvania 
Spangler, Henry Wilson, Pennsyl- 
Bull, Goold Hoyt, Pennsylvania 
Griffin, Robert Stanislaus, Virginia 
McElroy, George Wightman, Michi- 
Cooley, Mortimer Elwyn, New 

Bartlett, Frank William, Michigan 

Bieg, Frederick Charles, Missouri 

Gage, Howard, Michigan 

Wilmer, Joseph Ringgold, Mary- 

Gow, John Loudon, Indiana 

Wight, Charles Leslie, Massachu- 

Burd, George Eli, Massachusetts 


fMiner, Randolph Huntington, Ohio 
Hood, John, Alabama 
Clements, Abner Brush, Missouri 
Hayden, Edward Everett, Massa- 
Chase, Henry Sanders, Louisiana 
Moore, John McConnell, Indiana 
Garrett, Le Roy Mason, New York 
Marsh, Charles Carlton, Indiana 
Sloan, Robert Sage, New York 
Jungen, Charles William, Wisconsin 
Blish, John Bell, Indiana 
Harlow, Charles Henry, New York 

Wike, Harvey, Illinois 
Gill, William Andrew, Pennsylvania 
Schwerin, Rennie Pierre, New York 
Ripley, Charles Stedman, at large 
Gibson, John, Kentucky 
Cahoon, James Blake, Vermont 
Sears, Walter Jesse, Pennsylvania 
Garrett, Leigh Osborn, Illinois 
Menefee, Daniel Preston, California 
Snowden, Thomas, New York 
Dougherty, John Allen, Missouri 
Bell, John Arthur, West Virginia 
Tillman, Edward Hord, Tennessee 

452 The United States Naval Academy 

Kellogg, Francis Woodruff, Connec- 
Gibbons, John Henry, Michigan 
Robinson, Herbert Judson, New 

Cunningham, Andrew Chase, New 

Barnard, Louis Hall, Colorado 
Brown, Guy Warner, Indiana 
Thom, William Arthur, at large 

Lopez, Robert Files, Tennessee 
Drayton, Percival Langdon, at large 
Read, Maurice Lance, South Caro- 
Mudd, John Alexis, at large 
Graham, William Alfred, New York 
Bitler, Reuben Oscar, Pennsylvania 
Purcell, John Lewis, New Jersey 
Welsh, George Silvis, Pennsylvania 
Sturdivant, Harry Leland, Maine 


Gatewood, Richard, Virginia 
McFarland, Walter Martin, District 

of Columbia 
Bowles, Francis Tiffany, Massachu- 
Bryan, Benjamin Chambers, New 

Lubbe, Charles Custer, Pennsylvania 
Carr, Clarence Alfred, Pennsylvania 
Hunt, Andrew Murray, Indiana 
Acker, Edward O'Connor, Pennsyl- 
Annan, John Wesley, Massachusetts 
Ivers, Henry King, Missouri 
Norton, Harold Percival, New York 

Bennett, Frank Marion, Michigan 
Elseffer, Harry Smith, Iowa 
Talcott, Charles Gratiot, District 

of Columbia 
Crygier, John Ulysses, New York 
Isbester, Richard Thornton, Ten- 
Scribner, Edward Herschel, Massa- 
Bevington, Martin, Ohio 
Bowers, Frederic Clay, New Jersey 
Salisbury, George Robert, Missouri 
Pickrell, Joseph McCall, Virginia 
Baker, John Howard, Rhode Island 
Carter, Thomas Frederic, Kentucky - 


Alger, Philip Rounseville, at large 
Dresel, Herman George, Ohio 
Norton, Luman Spooner, Vermont 
Phelps, Harry, New Jersey 
Bemadou, John Baptiste, at large 
Hourigan, Patrick William, New 

Ackerman, Albert Ammerman, New 

Wolfersberger, William, Henry, Illi- 

Poundstone, Homer Clarke, West 

Haskell, Porter David, Michigan 
Niblack, Albert Parker, Indiana 
Wilkinson, Ernest, Louisiana 
Howze, Arthur Robertson, Missis' 

Truxtun, William, at large 
Morgan, Stokeley, Arkansas 
West, George Ernest, New York 
Walters, John Sproston, at, large 



Emerson, William Henry, at large 
Parke, Thomas Aloysius, West Vir- 
Duncan, Louis, Kentucky 
Muir, William Carpenter Pendleton, 

Cabaniss, Charles, Virginia 
■fHaeseler, Francis Joy, Pennsyl- 
Van Duzer, Louis Sayre, New York 
Rohrbacker, Joseph Hamilton, Penn- 
Beale, Joseph, Pennsylvania 
Simpson, Edward, Jr., at large 
Drake, James Calhoun, Arkansas 
Dickson, Joseph Morrill, Texas 
Dillman, George Lincoln, Iowa 
Bowdon, Frank Welch, Texas 
Mayer, Augustus Newkirk, Iowa 
Sims, William Sowden, Pennsylvania 
Buchanan, Wilson Wildman, Ohio 
Leiper, Edwards Fayssoux, Penn- 
Brainard, Fred Rowland, Illinois 
Safford, William Edwin, Ohio 
Eyre, Manning Kennard, at large 
Gorgas, Miles Carpenter, at large 
Scott, Richard Hamilton, Minnesota 

Wall, Francis Richardson, Missis- 
Finley, Henry Marzette, Ohio 
Fillebrown, Horatio Ladd, South 

Worthington, Thomas, at large 
Maxwell, William John, at large 
Huntoon, Fitz-Aubert, Kansas 
Swift, Franklin, Massachusetts 
Hill, Charles Homer, Wisconsin 
French, George Ross, at large 
Ashmore, Henry Beckwith, New 

Gray, James, Illinois 
Dewey, Theodore Gibbs, South 

Cramer, Ambrose, Indiana 
Luby, John Frazer, New York 
Richardson, Walter Gates, Massa- 
Clark, Lewis Jacob, Alabama 
Nash, Edwin White, Ohio 
Brown, James Stephen, Tennessee 
Belmont, Oliver Hazard Perry, New 

Brinley, Edward, at large 
Rodman, Hugh, Kentucky 
Bullitt, Howard Henry, at large 


Stahl, Albert William, New York 

Durand, William Frederick, Con- 

Hasson, Wm. Frederick Converse, 

Miner, Leo Dwight, Ohio 

Sample, Winfield Scott, Pennsylva- 

Woods, Arthur Tannatt, Massachu- 

Wood, Joseph I,earned, Virginia 

Manning, Charles Edward, New 

Hall, Harry, Pennsylvania 
AUderdice, William Hillary, Penn- 
Young, Albert Osborn, New York 
Smith, Albert Edward, Wisconsin 
King, Charles Alfred, Maryland 
Kinkaid, Thomas Wright, Ohio 
Weaver, William Dixon, Kentucky 
Worthington, John Leeds, Maryland 
Smith, William Strother, Virginia 

454 The United States Naval Academy 


f Schock, John Loomis, Pennsylvania 
Woodward, Joseph Janvier, at large 
Linnard, Joseph Hamilton, Pennsyl- 
Hoogewerff, John Adrian, at large 
Sutton, Francis Eskridge, New 

Rees, John Livermore, Michigan 
Dashiell, Robert Brooke, at large 
Rider, Frederic Clinton, Rhode 

White, Harry Kidder, Dakota 

Karmany, Lincoln, Pennsylvania 
Capehart, Edward Everett, Ohio 
Carroll, Eugene, at large 
Eldredge, Houston, at large 
Serata, Tasuka, Japan 
Bunts, Frank Emory, Ohio 
Lauchheimer, Charles Henry, Mary- 
Forshew, Robert Pierpont, New 

Stayton, William Henry, Delaware 
Doyen, Charles Augustus, New 

Mahoney, James Edward, Massa- 
Wilson, Henry Braid, New Jersey 
Andrews, Horace Burlingame, Mich- 
Hunicke, Felix Hermann, Missouri 
Moses, Franklin James, South Car- 
Wilkes, Gilbert, Utah Territory 
Uriu, Sotokichi, Japan 
Haines, Henry Cargill, at large 
Blow, George Preston, Virginia 
Barnett, George, Wisconsin 
Perkins, Con Marrast, at large 
Flournoy, William Francis, Louis- 

Smies, Frederic William, Ohio 
Colwell, James Hall, at large 
Ballentine, Henry Laird, Tennessee 
Clarke, George, Illinois 
Robinson, William Moody, at large 
Buck, Guy Morville, Maine 
Bryan, Samuel, Maryland 
Weeks, John Wingate, New Hamp- 
Harrison, Edward Hanson, at large 
George, Charles Peaslee, Illinois 
Weller, Ovington Eugene, Maryland 
Cohen, Harry Radcliffe, at large 
Stewart, Charles West, Illinois 
Kimball, John Arthur, Massachu- 
Crenshaw, James Davis, Texas 
Mcjunkin, Ira, Pennsylvania 
Hains, Robert Peter, Maine 
Cockle, Rudolphus Rouse, Illinois 
Kase, Spencer Mettler, Illinois 
Printup, David Lawrence, New 

McCrea, Alexander Sterling, at large 
Ford, William Griffing, Arkansas 
Emmet, William Le Roy, at large 
Craven, McDonough, New York 
Rodgers, Guy George, Tennessee 
Harmon, Eugene Marion, Ohio 
Donnelly, Michael Joseph, Wiscon- 
Dresser, James Walter, Minnesota 
Wright, Silas Haynes, Michigan 
Craig, Ben HoUiday, Missouri 
Mathews, Thomas Henry, .Pennsyl- 
Williamson, Samuel Hill, North 

Bonfils, Thomas Lewis, Pennsyl- 
Oliphant, Alexander Coulter, New 



Vance, Zebulon Baird, North Caro- 

McKee, Llewelyn Thomas, Mis- 

Morgan, Daniel, Kentucky 

Parsons, Arthur Carlton, Iowa 
Perry, George Ernest, Illinois 
Hasson, Alexander Ritchie, Con- 
Enouye, Yenosuke, Japan 




Whitham, Jay Manuel, Illinois 
Kaemmerling, Gustave, Indiana 
Shallenberger, Oliver Blackburn, 

Byrne, James Edwin, Massachusetts 
Dowst, Frank Batland, Massachu- 
McAlpine, Kenneth, Virginia 
Smith, William Stuart, New York 
Webster, William Townsend, New 

Bankson, Lloyd, Pennsylvania 
Mathews, Clarence Herbert, Ohio 
Redgrave, De Witt Clinton, Mary- 
Stewart, Robert, Jr., Michigan 
Parsons, Isaac Brown, Michigan 

White, William Wilmot, Pennsyl- 

Sampson, Bias Clay, Illinois 

Perkins, Lyman Burnham, Connec- 

Belden, Charles Emery, Ohio 

Arnold, Solon, Maryland 

Bush, Arthur Richmond, Massachu- 

Anderson, Martin Augustus, Wis- 

Hogan, Thomas Joseph, Georgia 

Gartley, William Henry, Pennsyl- 

Moritz, Albert, New York 

Beach, Robert James, New York 


fNixon, Lewis, Virginia 

Wood, Spencer Shepard, New York 

Arnold, John Thompson, Wyoming 

Fletcher, William Bartlett, Vermont 
Sutphen, Edson Webster, Nebraska 
Bennett, Louis Slocum, New Jersey 
Johnston, Marbury, Georgia 
Whittlesey, William Bailey, New 

McWhorter, Jacob Gray, Georgia 
Doyle, James Gregory, Pennsylvania 
Savage, Ledru RoUin, Illinois 

Jayne, Joseph Lee, Mississippi 
McNutt, Finley Alexander, Indiana 
Duncan, William Butler, Jr., New 

Prince, Thomas Clayton, Ohio 
Blandin, John Joseph, Alabama 
Howard, William Lauriston, Con- 
Field, Wiley Roy Mason, Virginia 
Anderson, Edwin Alexander, North 

Semple, Lorenzo, Alabama 
Key, Albert Lenoir, Tennessee 

456 The United States Naval Academy 

Paine, Walter Taylor, Ohio 
Horst, Henry August, Alabama 
Martin, Clarence, Louisiana 
Grambs, William Jacob, Pennsyl- 
Poyer, John Martin, at large 
Kenkel, Hermann Henry, Minne- 
Eames, Harold Hayden, Maine 
McGiffin, Philo Norton, Pennsyl- 

Hubbard, Nathaniel Mead, at large 
Gwyn, Ijawrence Langston, Missis- 
King, William Nephew, Jr. , 

Parker, Felton, Iowa 
Stable, Frederick Henry, California 
Patterson, S. Achmuty Wainwright, 

at large 
Kent, George Edward, New York 
Fowler, Hammond, Virginia 


Theiss, Emil, Wisconsin 

Gatewood, Robert Woodland, Vir- 

Creighton, William Henry Paul, 

Ferguson, George Robert, Connec- 

Miller, Peter, Kansas 

Chambers, William Henry, Penn- 

Fitts, James Henry, Virginia 

Rommell, Charles Edward, Penn- 

Gsantner, Otto Charles, New Jersey 

Clarke, Arthur Henry, Rhode Island 

Pendleton, Joseph Henry, Pennsyl- 

Hawthorne, Harry Leroy, Ken- 
Willis, Clarence Calhoun, Missis- 
Conant, Frank Hersey, Massachu- 
Leopold, Harry Girard, Ohio 
Higgins, Robert Barnard, Maryland 
Day, Willis Bunner, Ohio 
Leonard, John Calvin, Ohio 
Addicks, Walter Robarts, Pennsyl- 
Howland, Charles Henry, Rhode 

Winchell, Ward Philo, Ohio 
McAllister, Andrew, New York 
Coley, Frederick Edward, New York 


Greene, Samuel Dana, Jr., Rhode 

Street, George Washington, Wis- 

Armistead, Samuel Wilson, Virginia 

Baxter, William Joseph, Ohio 

Eaton, Charles Phillips, Wisconsin 

Aldrich, William Sleeper, New Jer- 

Jackson, John Brinckerhoflf, New 

Littlehales, George Washington, 



Dyson, Charles Wilson, Pennsyl- 
ElUcott, John Morris, Maryland 
Barkley, Richard Warren, Missouri 
Darrah, William Francis, Rhode 

Sweeting, Charles Edward, New 

Zinnell, George Frederick, Pennsyl- 
Keith, Albion Sherman, Massachu- 
George, Harry, Michigan 
Thurston, Benjamin Easton, Indiana 
Halstead, Alexander Seaman, Penn- 
■fChapin, Frederick Lincoln, Illinois 
Alexander, Robert Calder, Ken- 
Herbert, William Cromwell, Penn- 
Field, Harry Ashby, Virginia 
Webster, Charles Franklin, Penn- 
Gignilliat, Thomas Hey wood, 

Barnard, John Hall, New York 
Agee, Alfred Pelham, Alabama 
Witherspoon, Thomas Alfred, Ten- 
Frazier, Robert Thomas, Tennessee 
Stout, George Clymer, Pennsylvania 
Brady, Cyrus Tovpnsend, Kansas 

Mitchell, Sydney ZoUicoffer, Ala- 
Jackson, John Alexander, Florida 
Balthis, Harry Hamilton, Illinois 
Toney, Tremlet Vivian, Illinois 
Colvin, Frank Reginald, New York 
Dalrymple, Elton Wesley, Iowa 
O'Leary, Timothy Stephen, Massa- 
Philbin, Patrick Henry, Maryland 
Carswell, William Begs, Delaware 
Lerch, Robert Lee, Ohio 
Woods, Robert Harris, Virginia 
Palmer, James Edward, North Car- 
EUinger, Julius, Maryland 
Pettit, Harry Corbin, Indiana 
Gillis, Harry Alexander, Pennsyl- 
Weeks, Edwin Babbitt, Oregon 
Shock, Thos. Alexander Wharton, 

Von Schrader, George Morrison, 

Ledbetter, William Hamilton, Texas 
Wilson, William Joseph, Ohio 
Legare, Alexander Brown, South 

Gray, Willie Theodore, North Caro- 
Ryan, Philip Joseph, New York 
Glascock, Eustace Straughn, Mary- 


fHewes, Charles Hinman, Pennsyl- 
Knepper, Chester Mahlon, Pennsyl- 
Capps, Washington Lee, Virginia 
Hoggatt, Wilford Bacon, Indiana 
Williams, Clarence Stewart, Ohio 

Beecher, Albert Morrison, Iowa 

Hill, Frank Kinsey, Ohio 

Curtis, Frederic Ellsworth, Massa- 

Welles, Roger, Jr., Connecticut 

Moseley, Nathaniel Stockwell, Cali- 

458 The United States Naval Academy 

Field, Horace Almeron, New York 
McNulta, Herbert, Illinois 
Hulme, Walter Oliphant, New Jer- 
Leary, Thomas Horton, North Car- 
McDonald, John Daniel, Nevada 
Parmenter, Henry Earl, Rhode Isl- 
Jones, Hilary Pollard, Virginia 
Terrell, Douglass Fuqua, Mississippi 
Hazeltine, Charles Walter, Missouri 
Loomis, Frederick James, Connecti- 
McCay, Henry Kent, Georgia 
Seymour, Isaac Knight, Maine 
Shoemaker, William Rawle, New 

Plunkett, Charles Peshall, District 

of Columbia 
McCreary, Wirt, Pennsylvania 
Fahs, Charles Marion, Alabama 
Wemtz, Robert Lincoln, Pennsyl- 

Whittlesey, Humes Houston, In- 
McKean, Josiah Slutts, Ohio 
Hayes, Charles Harold, Pennsyl- 
Jones, Horace Walker, Virginia 
Macpherson, Victor, Kentucky 
Bush, William Wirt, Jr., New York 
Harrell, John Randolph, Louisiana 
Crisp, Richard Owens, Maryland 
Davis, Edward, Pennsylvania 
Johnston, William, Mississippi 
Starr, John Barton, Kansas 
Smith, Sidney Fuller, Massachusetts 
O'Malley, William Ambrose, Penn- 
Keilholtz, Pierre Otis, Maryland 
Richardson, Thornton Russell, 

Lawrance, William Hunter, Penn- 
Mathews, Albert Clifton, Ohio 
Wirt, William Edgar, Ohio 
Orr, Robert Hunter, Delaware 


+Taylor, David Watson, Virginia 
McKay, William, Delaware 
Tawresey, John Godwin, Delaware 
Dieffenbach, Albert Christian, Penn- 
Fenton, Theodore Cornell, Pennsyl- 
Chase, Volney Ogle, Louisiana 
Miller, William Gardner, Virginia 
Slocum, George Ralph, Illinois 
Kline, George Washington, New 

Kittrell, James Wesson, Mississippi 
Joynes, Walker Waller, Tennessee 
Thompson, Alexander, New York 

Stanworth, Charles Semmes, Vir- 
Strauss, Joseph, Virginia 
Bispham, Harrison Augustus, Penn- 
McGuiiiness, John Patrick, Idaho 

Russell, Robert Lee, Georgia 
Lombard, Benjamin Mathews, 

Rust, Arraistead, Virginia 
Nes, David Small, Pennsylvania 
Eberle, Edward Walter, Arkansas 
Slade, Thomas Bog, Georgia 
Gilmer, William Wirt, Virginia 



Shindel, James Elliott, Pennsyl- 
McCormick, Charles Monod, Vir- 
Tarbox, Glennie, South Carolina 
Evans, George Robert, Massachu- 
Coontz, Robert Edward, Missouri 
Poe, Charles Carroll, Pennsylvania 

Wright, Benjamin, Tennessee 
Burnstine, Albert, Michigan 
Dutton, Arthur Henry, Indiana 
Corpening, Charles Macon, North 

Bootes, James Thomas, Delaware 
Pitner, Samuel Ellis, Tennessee 
Howell, Robert Beecher, Michigan 


Kress, Frederick Norton, New 

Breed, George, Kentucky 
BuUard, William Hannum Grubb, 

Edgar, Webster Appleton, New 

Oman, Joseph Wallace, Pennsyl- 
Dodd, Willard Louis, Indiana 
Faust, William Harry, Ohio 
Andrews, Philip, New Jersey 
Caldwell, William Howell, Tennes- 
Tisdale, Ryland Dillard, Kentucky 
Strite, Samuel Melchior, Maryland 
Jenkins, Friend William, Pennsyl- 

Levis, Francis Adelbert, New York 
•f-Hines, Harold Kemble, Kentucky 
Cooper, George Franklin, Georgia 
Rumsey, Harry Edgerton, Wyoming 

Witherspoon, Edwin Taylor, Con- 
Johnson, Edwin Van Dusen, Indiana 
Hawke, George Frederick, Penn- 
Griswold, John Noble, Wisconsin 
McMillan, John Taylor, California 
Billings, Cornelius Canfield, Ver- 
Winram, Samuel Black, Missouri 
Berry, John Giveen, Maine 
Young, David May, Virginia 


Stocker, Robert, Minnesota 
-|-Hibbs, Frank Warren, Minnesota 
Snow, Elliott, Utah Territory 
Decker, Benton Clark, Illinois 
Bristol, Mark Lambert, New Jersey 
Wells, Benjamin Warner, Jr., Illi- 
McCuUy, Newton Alexander, Jr., 
South Carolina 

Burke, Walter Safford, Illinois 
Cloke, William Snelling, New Jersey 
Stearns, Ben Wade, Iowa 
Bertolette, Levi Calvin, Delaware 
Hurlbut, Samuel Ray, Connecticut 
Moale, Edward, Jr., Montana 
Bryan, Henry Francis, Ohio 
McMillan, William Graham, North 

460 The United States Naval Academy 

Durell, Edward Hovey, Massachu- 
Logan, George Wood, Ohio 
Long, Andrew Theodore, North 

Brown, Ford Hopkins, Iowa 
Peckham, Henry Lincoln, Rhode 

Washington, Thomas, North Caro- 
Scales, Archibald Henderson, North 

Stone, Clarence Morton, Indiana 
Churchill, Creighton, Missouri 
Davis, Archibald Hilliard, North 

Johnston, Charles Ernest, Ohio 
Draper, Herbert Lemuel, Kansas 
Boughter, Francis, Pennsylvania 
Blue, Victor, South Carolina 

Pigott, Michael Royston, Massachu- 
Edmonds, Samuel Preston, Missouri 
Burrage, Guy Hamilton, Massachu- 
Russell, Frank Mead, Pennsylvania 
Coleman, Ross, California 
Allen, Henry Asa, Wisconsin 
Jackson, Richard Harrison, Alabama 
Swanstrom, Frederick Emil, Min- 
Cochran, Claude Stanley, Ohio 
Ballinger, James Grey, Kansas 
Craig, Colin Samuel, Iowa 
Hudson, Charles Edward, Arkansas 
Moseley, William Branch, Texas 
Young, Louis le Sassier, Louisiana 
O'Halloran, Thomas Michael, Penn- 


fVan Sant, William Newton, Penn- 
Marble, Frank, New York 
Wilbur, Curtis Dwight, Dakota 
Robertson, Ashley Herman, Illinois 
Brittain, Carlo Bonaparte, Kentucky 
Morgan, Casey Bruce, Mississippi 
Crose, William Michael, Indiana 
Miller, Marcus Lyon, Massachusetts 
Hayward, George North, New York 
Koester, Oscar William, Pennsyl- 
Beswick, Delworth Wilson, Michi- 
Hubbard, John Flavel, New York 
Lejeune, John Archer, Louisiana 
Robison, Samuel Shelbum, Penn- 
Chandler, Lloyd Horwitz, New 

Hartrath, Armin, Michigan 

Ingate, Clarence Louis Adrian, 

Benham, Henry Kennedy, New York 
West, Ernest Edward, Georgia 
Hughes, Charles Frederic, Maine 
Norton, Albert Leland, Ohio 
Stafford, Leroy Augustus, I^ouisiana 
Aiken, Samuel James, Tennessee 
Cole, Eli Kelley, New York 
Anderson, Louis Joseph, Georgia 
Franklin, William Buell, Maryland 
Reid, James Henry, Virginia 
Cramer, Stuart Warren, Illinois 
Stickney, Herman Osman, Kentucky 
Beach, Edward Latimer, Minnesota 
Bassett, Frederick Brewster, Jr., 

New York 
Gates, Herbert Grenville, Michigan 
Monroe, Moses Daniel, New York 
Wiley, Henry Ariosto, Texas 
Kane, Theodore Porter, at large 




fHobson, Richmond Pearson, Ala- 
Rock, George Henry, Michigan 
HofI, Arthur Bainbridge, at large 
Twining, Nathan Crook, Wisconsin 
Hutchison, Benjamin Franklin, 

Pratt, William Veazie, Maine 
Kittelle, Sumner Ely, New York 
Marvel, George Ralph, Massachu- 
Nulton, Louis McCoy, Virginia 
Lucas, Lewis Clark, Ohio 
Patton, John Bryson, South Carolina 
Neumann, Bertram Stansbury, New 

Long, Charles Grant, Massachusetts 
MacDougall, William Dugald, New 

Danforth, George Washington, Mis- 
Magruder, Thomas Pickett, Missis- 

Lowndes, Edward Rutledge, Michi- 
de Steigner, Louis Rudolph, Ohio 
Bradshaw, George Brown, Texas 
Phelps, William Woodward, Mary- 
Kaiser, Louis Anthony, Illinois 
Offley, Cleland Nelson, Indiana 
Cole, William Carey, Illinois 
Mitchell, George Grant, Indiana 
Fuller, Ben Hebard, Michigan 
Brand, Charles Augustine, Connec- 
Williams, Philip, Vermont 
Carney, Robert Ernest, Wisconsin 
Terhune, Warren Jay, New Jersey 
Dutton, Robert McMillan, Califor- 
Harrison, William Kelley, Texas 
Kirk, George William, Missouri 
Prochazka, Julius, Wisconsin 
Anderson, Ernest Bentley, Kentucky 
Fermier, George Lucien, Indiana 


fRuhm, Thomas Francis, Tennessee 

Spear, Lawrence, Ohio 

Coleman, Noah Tunnicliff, New 

Scofield, Frank Herman, New York 
Chase, Jehu Valentine, Louisiana 
Gartley, Alonzo, Iowa 
Ziegemeier, Henry Joseph, Ohio 
Holmes, Urban Tigner, Arkansas 
Davis, Cleland, Kentucky 
Signor, Matt Howland, Nebraska 
Blankenship, John Millington, Vir- 

Buck, William Henry, Mississippi 
Taylor, Montgomery Meigs, at large 
Ritter, Henry Snyder, Pennsylvania 
Williams, George Washington, South 

Price, Claude Bernard, Mississippi 
Catlin, Albertus Wright, Minne- 
McVay, Charles Butler, Colorado 
Vogelgesang, Charles Theodore, 

Everhart, Lay Hampton, Alabama 

4^2 The United States Naval Academy 

Snow, William Alanson, Massachu- 
Sullivan, Franklin Buchanan, at 

Bailey, Claude, Arkansas 
Neville, Wendell Gushing, Virginia 
Moses, Lawrence Henry, New York 
Dayton, John Havens, at large 
Bostwick, Lucius Allyn, Massachu- 
Bond, Charles Otis, Iowa 

Radford, Cyrus Sugg, Kentucky 

Treadwell, Thomas Conrad, Massa- 

Moffell, William Adger, South 

Litimer, Julius Lane, West Vir- 

Dismukes, Doctor Eugene, Missis- 

Edie, John Rufus, at large 


fZahm, Frank Baker, Pennsylvania 
Gillmor, Horatio Gonzalo, Wiscon- 
Smith, Henry Gerrish, Ohio 
Watt, Richard Morgan, Pennsylvania 
Belknap, Reginald Rowan, Arkansas 
Blamer, DeWitt, Iowa 
Robison, John Keeler, Michigan 
Stearns, Clark Daniel, Michigan 
Ninde, Daniel Benjamin, Indiana 
Pollock, Edwin Taylor, Ohio 
Kuenzli, Henry Charles, Wisconsin 
Willard, Arthur Lee, Missouri 
Christy, Harley Hannibal, Ohio 
Rowen, John Howard, Pennsylvania 
Hartung, Renwick John, Iowa 
Hough, Henry Hughes, Massachu- 
Irwin, Noble Edward, Ohio 
Smith, Lucien Greathouse, Illinois 
Reed, Milton Eugene, Iowa 
Evans, Waldo, Kansas 
Moale, John Gray Foster, California 
Flowers, Robert Lee, North Carolina 
Emrich, Charles Rulf, Illinois 
McLemore, Albert Sidney, Tennes- 

Senn, Thomas Jones, South Carolina 
Bierer, Bion Barnett, Kansas 
McGrann, William Hugh, Tennessee 
Caldwell, Harry Handly, Illinois 
Preston, Charles Francis, Maryland 
Williams, Dion, Ohio 
Lane, Rufus Herman, Ohio 
Sypher, Jay Hale, Arizona 
Shepard, George Hugh, Wisconsin 
Leigh, Richard Henry, Mississippi 
McFarland, Horace Greeley, New 

Brotherton, William Daniel, Wiscon- 
Althouse, Adelbert, Illinois 
Carter, James Francis, Pennsylvania 
Kochersperger, Frank Henry, Penn- 
McKelvey, William Nessler, Penn- 
Smith, Harry Eaton, Ohio 
Theall, Elisha, New York 
Laws, George William, Iowa 
Blount, Irving, Indiana 
Richards, George, Ohio 
Gross, Louis Herman, Illinois 




Beuret, John Dougall, Ohio 
fMcDonald, Joseph Ezekiel, Illinois 
Ferguson, Homer Lenoir, North 

Day, George Calvin, Vermont 
McNamee, Luke, Kansas 
Campbell, Joseph Randolph, Wyo- 
Huffington, Howard Williams, 

Blakely, John Russell Young, Penn- 
Dawson, William Charles, Missouri 
Jewell, Charles Theodore, at large 
^vans, Holden A., Florida 
Sawyer, Frederick Lewis, Illinois 
Hussey, Charles Lincoln, New 

Porter, John Singleton, Tennessee 
Davison, Gregory Caldwell, Missouri 
Thompson, Leon Seymour, Ohio 
Hines, John Fore, Kentucky 
Traut, Frederick Augustus, Con- 
Sheehan, James, New York 
Low, Theodore Henry, Connecticut 

Stitt, Thomas Lutz, Indiana 
Stirling, Yates, Jr., Massachusetts 
Symington, Powers, West Virginia 
Crank, Robert Kyle, Texas 
Moses, Stanford Elwood, Louisiana 
Pringle, Joel Robert Poinsett, Illinois 
Mather, George Herbert, New 

Borden, Thomas Sheppard, Georgia 
Payne, Fred Rounsville, New York 
Mallison, George, North Carolina 
McCormick, Benjamin Bernard, 

New York 
Ball, Walter, New York 
Myers, John Twiggs, Georgia 
Russell, John Henry, Jr. , at large 
Gamble, Aaron Lichtenberger, In- 
Macklin, Charles Fearns, New 

Kellogg, Edward Stanley, New 

Davis, Austin Rockwell, Georgia 
Hasbrouck, Raymond De Lancy, 

Allen, David Van Horn, Tennessee 


Powelson, Wilfred Van Nest, New 

fMontgomery, William Slack, Ken- 

Nutting, Daniel Chaplin, Jr., Kan- 

Elder, Edwin Avery, Massachusetts 

Clark, Frank Hodges, Jr., Rhode 

Fitch, Claude Eames, Illinois 

Ward, Henry Heber, New Jersey 

Perry, Joseph Albert, Illinois 
Bissett, Eugene Leo, Kentucky 
Crosley, Walter Selwyn, Connecticut 
Peugnet, Maurice Berthold, Missouri 
Lang, Charles Jonas, Pennsylvania 
Campbell, Edward Hale, Indiana 
Magill, Louis John, Pennsylvania 
Parker, Thomas Drayton, South 

Berry, David Mark, California 
Price, Henry Bertrand, Iowa 

464 The United States Naval Academy 

Wilson, Thomas Sheldon, Illinois 
Doddridge, John Sehon, West Vir- 
Trench, Martin Edward, Minnesota 
Pearson, Henry Allen, Utah 
Gise, William Kean, Illinois 
Cook, Allen Merriam, Kansas 
Chadwick, Frank Laird, Minnesota 
Fewel, Christopher Catron, Texas 
Olmstead, Percy Napier, Oregon 
Jackson, Orton Porter, Pennsylvania 
Hains, Peter Conover, Jr., District 

of Columbia 
Powell, William Glasgow, New 

Douglas, Richard Spencer, Georgia 

Upham, Frank Brooks, Montana 
Brady, John Richard, Pennsylvania 
Sticht, John Low, New York 
Ryan, John Paul Joseph, New 

Read, Frank Da Witt, Ohio 
Morris, John Jlamsay, Missouri 
Wells, Chester, Pennsylvania 
Holsinger, Gerald Long, Kansas 
McKethan, Alfred Augustus, North 

Pollock, Emmett Biddle, Illinois 
Potter, James Boyd, New Jersey 
Pratt, Alfred Allen, Illinois 
Carver, Marvin, Minnesota 
Proctor, Andre Morton, Kentucky 


f Robert, William Pierre, Mississippi 
Cox, Daniel Hargate, New York 
Gillis, Irvin Van Gorder, New York 
Roberts, Thomas Gaines, Alabama 
Sellers, David Foote, New Mexico 
Adams, Lawrence Stowell, Pennsyl- 
Stone, Raymond, Alabama 
Tompkins, John Thomas, Louisiana 
McLean, Ridley, Tennessee 
Webster, Charles, Massachusetts 
Hudgins, John Milton, Virginia 
Babin, Provoost, New York 
Churchill, Winston, Missouri 
Jones, Lewis Burton, New York 
Fullinwider, Simon Peter, Missouri 
McMorris, Boling Kavanagh, Ala- 
Graham, Stephen Victor, Michigan 
Bennett, Ernest Linwood, Massa- 
Hinds, Alfred Walton, Alabama 
Moody, Roscoe Charles, Maine 
Luby, John McLane, Texas 

Sandoz, Fritz Louis, Louisiana 
Galbraith, Gilbert Smith, Pennsyl- 
Cooper, Ignatius Taylor, Delaware 
Baker, Henry Thomas, Ohio 
Chappell, Ralph Hubert, Michigan 
James, Leland Frierson, South Caro- 
Shaw, Melville Jones, Minnesota 
Kavanagh, Arthur Glynn, Nebraska 
Bookwaiter, Charles Sumner, Illi- 
Scott, William Pitt, Pennsylvania 
Snow, Carlton Farwell, Maine 
Osborn, Robert Hatfield, New 

Spear, Roscoe, Pennsylvania 
Manion, Walter James, Louisiana 
Lyon, Frank, Kentucky 
McNeeley, Robert Whitehead, North 

Reeves, Joseph Mason, Illinois 
Turpin, Walter Stevens, Maryland 
Bulmer, Roscoe Carlisle, Neyada 



Whitted, William Scott, North 

Cone, Hutch Ingham, Florida 
Stone, George Loring Porter, 


Winship, Emory, Georgia 
Gelm, George Earl, New York 
England, Clarence, Arkansas 
De Lany, Edwin Hayden, Tennessee 



■fSmith, Stuart Farrar, Pennsylvania 
Groesbeck, William Gerard, Ohio 
Dick, Thomas Merritt, South Caro- 
Brumby, Frank Hardeman, Georgia 
Baldwin, Frank Pardee, New Jersey 
Mallory, Charles King, Tennessee 
Davidson, William Christopher, 

South Dakota 
Laniiig, Harris, Illinois 
Mansfield, Newton, Ohio 
Bannon, Philip Michael, Maryland 
Chester, Arthur Tremaine, at large 
Monaghan, John Robert, Washing- 
Butler, Henry Varnum, Jr., New 

Garrison, Daniel Mershon, New 

Karns, Franklin D., Ohio 
Walker, James Erling, North Caro- 
Cushman, William Reynolds, New 

Todd, David Wooster, California 
Raby, James Joseph, Michigan 
Vestal, Samuel Curtis, Indiana 
Morton, James Proctor, Missouri 
Standley, William Harry, California 

Gherardi; Walter Rockwell, at large 
Klemann, John Valentine, New 

Bennett, Kenneth Marratt, New 

Freeman, Frederick Newton, In- 
Walker, Charles Henry, Massachu- 
McCormack, Michael James, Mich- 
Bagley, Worth, North Carolina 
Wadhams, Albion James, New York 
Barnes, Cassius Bartlett, Oklahoma 
Watson, Edward Howe, Kentucky 
Breckinridge, Joseph Cabell, Ken- 
Knepper, Orlo Smith, Pennsylvania 
Hall, Newt Hamill, Texas 
Johnston, Rufus Zenas, Jr., North 

Bayers, Joseph Draper, Jr., New 

Marshall, John Francis, Jr., Texas 
Merritt, Darwin Robert, Iowa 
Dunn, Edward Howard, Connecti- 
Eckhardt, Ernest Frederick, Wis- 


•j-Robinson, Richard Hallett, Ohio 
Leiper, Charles Lewis, Pennsyl- 


Holden, Jonas Hannibal, Vermont 
Craven, Thomas Tingey, New 

466 The United States Naval Academy 

Poor, Charles Longstreet, "New York 
Earle, Ralph, Massachusetts 
Lincoln, Gatewood Sanders, Mis- 
Kalbach, Andrew Edwin, Pennsyl- 
Walker, Ralph Eric, Indiana 
Fitzgerald, Edwin Thomas, Texas 
Wurtsbaugh, Daniel Wilbert, Texas 
Wettingill, Ivan Cyrus, California 
Tozer, Charles Maxson, New York 
Bisset, Henry Overstreet, Mary- 
Cluverius, Wat Tyler, Jr., Louisiana 
Kimball, Henry Swift, Massachu- 
Wood, Duncan Mahon, Alabama 
Palmer, Leigh Carlisle, Missouri 
Marshall, Albert Ware, Texas 
Kearney, Thomas Albert, Missouri 
Mc Arthur, Arthur, Jr., Wisconsin 

Ridgely, Frank Eugene, at large 
Knox, Dudley Wright, Tennessee 
Burt, Charles Perry, Georgia 
Gilpin, Charles Edward, Michigan 
Ellis, Mark St. Clair, Arkansas 
McCauley, Edward, Jr., New York 
Castleman, Kenneth Galleher, Ken- 
Littlefield, William Lord, Massa- 
Jessop, Earl Percy, West Virginia 
Roys, John Holley, New York 
Mustin, Henry Croskey, Tennessee 
Washington, Pope, North Carolina 
Rice, George Benjamin, Kentucky 
Curtin, Roland Irvin, Pennsylvania 
Henry, James Buchanan, Jr., New 

Crenshaw, Arthur, Alabama 
Bronson, Amon, Jr., Nebraska 


fDu Bose, William Gunnell, 

Eggert, Ernest Frederick, Michigan 
Yarnell, Harry Ervin, Iowa 
Perrill, Harlan Page, Indiana 
Hepburn, Arthur Japy, Pennsylvania 
Theleen, David Elias, Wisconsin 
Pressey, Alfred Warren, Nebraska 
Jones, Needham Lee, Mississippi 
Reynolds, William Herbert, Georgia 
Overstreet, Luther Martin, Ne- 
Hart, Thomas Charles, Michigan 
Murfin, Orin Gould, Ohio 
Sargent, Leonard Rundlett, Minne- 
Miller, Cyrus Robinson, California 
Chase, Gilbert, Virginia 
White, William Russell, Arizona 

Graeme, Joseph Wright, Pennsyl- 
Houston, Victor Stuart, South Dakota 
Sexton, Walter Roswell, Illinois 
Boyd, David French, Jr., Alabama 
Holman, Frederic Ralph, Iowa 
Falconer, Walter Maxwell, Ohio 
McCarthy, Albert Henry, Iowa 
Williams, Hilary, Indiana 
McDowell, Willis, Pennsylvania 
Duncan, Oscar Dibble, Alabama 
Smith, Arthur St. Clair, Jr. , Iowa 
Henderson, Robert William, Ohio 
Kautz, Austin, Washington , 
Owens, Charles Truesdale, Pennsyl- 
Giles, William Pinkney, Texas 
Asserson, William Christian, New 



Owen, Alfred Crosby, District of 

Magill, Samuel George, Jr., North 

Landis, Irwin Franklin, Kansas 
Kempff, Clarence Selby, California 

(engineer division.) 
Mahoney, Daniel Sullivan, Michigan 
Collins, Henry Lafayette, Pennsyl- 

Richardson, Louis Clark, South 

Graham, Andrew Thomas, Illinois 
Jenson, Henry Norman, Wisconsin 
Pratt, Peter Lloyd, Illinois 
Leahy, William Daniel, Wisconsin 
Webber, George, Arkansas 
Keenan, Ernest Clinton, New York 
Van Orden, George, Michigan 


fHalligan, John, Jr., Massachusetts 
Williams, Henry, Maryland 
Watts, William Carleton, Pennsyl- 
Smith, George Leonard. New 

Briggs, Wilbur Gerheart, New York 
Marble, RalphNorris, Jr., Minnesota 
Hand, James Alexander, Jr., South 

Gotten, Lyman Atkinson, North 

Woods, Edward, Massachusetts 
Boone, Charles, Ohio 
Mclntyre, Edward William, Cali- 
Pinney, Frank Lucius, Connecticut 
Cronan, William Pigott, Connecticut 
Macy,"Ulysses Samuel, Missouri 
Briggs, Zeno Everett, Nebraska 
Tardy, Walter Benjamin, Arkansas 
Tarrant, William Theodore, Texas 
Abele, Clarence Arthur, Massachu- 
Williams, Yancy Sullivan, South 

Johnson, Thomas Lee, Kansas 
Pettingill, George Tilford, Idaho 
Sweet, George Cook, New York 
Evans, Franck Taylor, Son of 

Brown, Morris Hamilton, Indiana 
Hanrahan, David Carlisle, Wisconsin 
Babcock, John Franklin, New York 
Nelson, Charles Preston, Massachu- 
Roper, Walter Gordon, Georgia 

(engineer division.) 

Wright, Henry Tutwiler, Alabama 
Elson, Herman Jacob, Mississippi 
Sheffield, Fletcher Lamar, Georgia 
Dinger, Henry Charles, Wisconsin 
Mitchell, Alexander Neely, Iowa 
Shane, Louis, Nebraska 
Faller, Guy William, Wisconsin 
Wells, William Benefiel, Iowa 
Constien, Edward Theodore, Penn- 
Schofield, John Anderson, Missouri 
Graham, John Sisson, Colorado 

468 The United States Naval Academy 

(Ordered into Active Service January 27, 1899.) 

•fSparrow, Herbert George, Ohio 
Bisset, Guy Aloysius, Kentucky 
Buchanan, Allen, Indiana 
Feniier, Edward Blaine, New York 
Bailey, John Eliot, Michigan 
White, Richard Race, Missouri 
Gleason, Henry Miller, Kansas 
Weichert, Ernest Augustus, Con- 
Wood, Welbo'rn Cicero, Georgia 
Kimberly, Victor Ashfield, Massa- 
Beckner, John Taliaferro, Kentucky 
Dungan, Paul Baxter, Nebraska 
Sadler, Everit Jay, Kansas 
Bloch, Claude Charles, Kentucky 
Royall, Hilary Herbert, Alabama 
Lackey, Henry Ellis, at large 
Taussig, Joseph Knefler, Son of 

Kalbfus, Edward Clifford, at large 
Woodward, Clark Howell, Georgia 
Clement, James Wilkinson Legare, 

Jr., South Carolina 
Cole, Cyrus Willard, Ohio 
Miller, William Siebel, Texas 
Shapley, Lloyd Stowell, Missouri 
Lewis, John Earl, Minnesota 
Evans, Herbert Heard, Mississippi 
Major, Samuel Ira Monger, Ken- 
Greenslade, John Willis, Ohio 
Watson, Adolphus Eugene, at large 

Sayles, William Randall, Rhode 

Morrison, Farmer, Arkansas 
Yates, Alexander Fred Hammond, 

Fischer, Charles Hermann, Penn- 
Tomb, James Harvey, Missouri 
Brinser, Harry Lerch, Pennsylvania 
Morgan, Charles Elmer, West Vir- 
Mathews, James Edward, Illinois 
Bowers, John Treadwell, New Jer- 
Courtney, Charles Edward, New 

Thomas, Samuel Brown, at large 
Combs, James Rockwell, Illinois 
Home, Frederick Joseph, New York 
Johnson, Alfred Wilkinson, at large 
Larimer, Edgar Brown, Kansas 
Vincent, Roe Willis, Pennsylvania 
Hunt, Walter Merrill, Maine 
Branch, Frank Oak, Maryland 
Helm, Frank Pinckney, Jr., Ken- 
Pope, Ralph Eaton, Nebraska 
Gilmer, James Blair, Virginia 
Shackford, Chauncey, New Jersey 
Hatch, Charles Byron, Jr., Illinois 
Forman, Charles William, Illinois 
Madison, Zachariah Harvey, Illinois 





Baker, C. H. [Ch'f Eng'r], H'd 

Steam Eng., 1873 to 1878 (5 yrs.) 

Baker, S. H. [L't-Com'd'r], Math., 
Mech's, and H'd Nav'n, between 
1873 and 1885 (9 yrs.) 

Balch, G. B. [R. Adm'l], Superin- 
tendent, 1879 to 1881 (2 yrs.) 

Barnes, J. S. [Passed Mid'n, L't- 
Com'd'r], English, Sea., and H'd 
English, between 1856 and 1868 
(4 yrs.) 

Bartlett, C. W. [Master, Lieut.], 
Math., Sea., Ex. Duty, Nav'n.and 
H'd Nav'n, between 1878 and 
1900 (12 yrs.) 

Belknap, C. [Lieut., L't-Com'd'r, 
Com'd'r], English, Physics, Ex. 
Duty, H'd Mech's, H'd Nav'n, 
between 1873 and i8g8 (12 yrs.) 

Blake, F. B. [Master, Lieut., L't- 
Com'd'r], English, Ex. Duty, 
Math., Physics, H'd English, be- 
tween 1862 and 1869 {\\ yrs.) 

Blake, G. S. [Capt., Commodore], 
Superintendent, 1857 to 1865 (8 

Bowman, C. G. [Lieut.], Math., 
Gun., H'd Nav'n, hatween 1876 
and 1893 (7 yrs.) 

Breese, K. R. [Capt.], Com'd't 
Mid'n, 1873 to 1874 (I yr.) 

Brownson, W. H. [Lieut, Com'd'r], 
Math., Ex. Duty, Com'd't Cadets, 
between 1872 and 1B96 (7 yrs.) 

Buchanan, F. [Com'd'r], Super- 
intendent, 1845 to 1847 (ij yrs.) 

Carpenter, C. C. [L't-Com'd'r], Ex. 
Duty, H'd Gun., 1863 to 1865 (2 

Carter, S. P. [Act. Mid'n, Master, 
Lieut., Capt.], Ex. Duty, Com'd't 
Mid'n, between 1850 and 1873 
(7 yrs.) 

Chester, C. M. [L't-Com'd'r, 
Com'd'r], Sea., Com'd't Cadets, he- 
tween 1874 and 1895 (7 yrs.) 

Colvocoresses, G. P. [Lieut., L't- 
Com'd'r], Drawing, H'd Draw- 
ing, between 1886 and 1897 (8 

Cook, F. H. [L't-Com'd'r], Math., 
Sea., H'd Sea., between 1869 
and 1883 (5 yrs.) 

Cooke, A. P. [L't-Com'd'r,Com'd'r], 
Infantry, Nav'n, H'd Drawing, 
H'd Gun., between 1864 and 
1873 (6 yrs.) 

Cooper, P. H. [Mid'n, Lieut., Lt.- 
Com'd'r, Capt.], Math., Sea., 
Superintendent, between 1862 
and i8g8 (8^ yrs.) 

47° The United States Naval Academy 

Corbin, T. J. [Com'd'r], Com'd't 
Mid'n, June to September, 1863 

Craig, J. E. [Lieut., L't-Com'd'r, 
Com'd'r], Sea., Nav'n, II' d Eng- 
lish, between 1871 and 1894 (11 

Craven, T. T. [Lieut., Com'd'r], 
Com'd't Mid'n, between 185 1 and 
i860 (6 yrs.) 

Dyer, G. L. [Master, Lieut.], Math., 
H'd Languages, between 1877 
and 1 896 (6 yrs.) 

Elmer, H. [L't-Com'd'r], Sea., /T'l/ 
Sea., 1882 to 1886 (4 yrs.) 

Fairfax, D. McN. (Com'd'r], Com'a?'/ 
Mid'n, 1863 to 1865 (2 yrs.) 

Farmer, E, [Ch'f Eng'r], H'd 
Steam Eng., 1882 to 1888 (6 yrs.) 

Farquhar, N. H. [L't-Com'd'r, 
Com'd'r], Ex. Duty, Nav'n, H'd 
Sea., Coffi'i/'^ Cai/if/'j, between 1865 
and 1886 (q yrs.) 

Fitch, H. W. [Ch'f Eng'r], H'd 
Steam Eng., 1888 to 1893 (5 yrs.) 

Garst, P. [Lieut., L't-Com'd'r], Eng- 
lish, H'd English, 1892 to pres- 

Gillpatrick, W. W. [L't-Com'd'r], 
H'd Sea., 1889 to 1893 (4 yrs.) 

Glass, H. [Mid'n, Com'd'r], Math., 
Com'd't Cadets, between 1862 and 
1891 (3 yrs.) 

Greene, S. D. [L't-Com'd'r], Ex. 
Duty, H'd Nav'n, between 1865 
and 1882 (10 yrs.) 

Harrington, P. F. [L't-Com'd'r, 
Com'd'r], Math., Nav'n, H'd 
Nav'n, H'd Sea., Com'd't Cadets, 
between 1868 and 1889 (10 yrs.) 

Howell, J. A. [L't-Com'd'r], Nav'n, 

H'd Nav'n, between 1869 and 

1879 (7 yrs.) 
Howison, H. L. [Com'd'r], Ex. 

Duty, H'd Sea., between 1870 

and 1876 (6 yrs.) 
Hoyt, E. [Ch'f Eng'r], Steam Eng., 

H'd Steam Eng., 1865 to 1867 (2 

Huntington, C. L. [Act. Master, 

Com'd'r], Ex. Duty, H'd Gun., 

Com'd't Cadets, between 1861 and 

1887 (5 yrs.) 
lluse, H. McL. P. [Ensign, Lieut.], 

Mech's, Math., H'd Languages, 

between 1886 and present (7 yrs.) 

IngersoU, R. R. [Lieut., L't-Com'd'r, 
Com'd'r], Math., Own., H'd Gun., 
between i885 and present (13 

Jasper, R. T. [Lieut., L't-Com'd'r], 
English, Ex. Duty, H'd English, 
between 1877 and 1898 (8 yrs.) 

Kearney, G. H. [2d Ass't Eng'r, 
Passed Ass't Eng'r, Com'd'r], 
Steam Eng., H'd Steam Eng., 
between 1872 and present (7 yrs.) 

Knox, H. [Lieut.. L't-Com'd'r, 
Com'd'r], Math., Mech's, Draw- 
ing, H'd Drawing, H'd Math., 
H'd Mech's, between 1875 and 
1899 (16 yrs.) 

Leutz^ E. H. C. [Lieut., L't- 
Com'd'r], Sea., H'd Languages, 
1886 to 1890 (4 yrs.) 

Lewis, R. F. R. [L't-Com'd'r], 
H'd Sea., 1865 to 1866 (i yr.) 

Luce, S. B. [Lieut., L't-Com'd'r, 
Com'd'r], Gun., H'd Sea., 
Com'd't Mid'n, between i860 
and 1868 (4 yrs.) 



Lull, E. P. [Lieut., L't-Com'd'r], 
English, Math., Languages, H'd 
Drawing, between i860 and 1869 
(6 yrs.J 

Mahan, A. T. [Lieut., Com'd'r], 
Sea., H'd Gun., between 1862 
and 1880 (4 yrs.) 

Matthews, E. O. [Lieut., L't- 
Com'd'r], Math., Sea., Gun., H'd 
Gun., between i860 and 1869 (8 

McCauley, E. Y. [Com'd'r], H'd 
Langtmges, 1870 to 1872 (2 yrs.) 

McCormick, A. H. [L't-Com'd'r], 
Math., Nav'n, H'd Nav'n, be- 
tween 1866 and 1875 (6 yrs.) 

McCrackin, A. [Lieut.], Mech's, 
H'd Gun., between 1880 and 1897 
(6 yrs.) 
■McNair, F. V. [L't-Com'd'r, 
Com'd'r, R. Adm'l], Sea., H'd 
Drawing, Com'd't Cadets, Super- 
intendent, between 1867 and 
igoo (II yrs.) 

Meade, R. W. [L't-Com'd'r], Sea., 
H'd Sea., 1865 to 1868 (3 yrs.) 

Merrell, J. P. [Lieut., L't-Com'd'r], 

. Math., Mech's, H'd Mech's be- 
tween 1882 and 1893 (9 yrs.) 

O'Kane, J. [Lieut., L't-Com'd'r], 
Nav'n, Gun., H'd Gun., between 
1865 and 1877 (4 yrs.) 

Parker, F. A. [Commodore], Super- 
intendent, 1878 to 1879 (i yr.) 

Parker, W. H. [Lieut.], Nav'n, 
H'd Sea., between 1856 and 1861 
(2 yrs.) 

Peck, R. G. [Lieut.], Nav'n, Ex. 
Duty, H'd Languages, H'd 
Drawing, between 1882 and 1898 
(8 yrs.) 

Phythian, R. L. [Lieut., L't-Com'd'r, 
Capt.], Ex. Duty, H'd Nav'n, 

Superintendent, between 1862 ' 

and 1894 (9 yrs.) 
Porter, D. D. [Rear Adm'l, Vice 

Adm'l], Superintendent, 1865 to 

1869 (4 yrs.) 
Potter, W. P. [Lieut., L't-Com'd'r], 

English, Gun., Ex. Duty, H'd 

English, between 1875 and 1897 

(12 yrs.) 

Rae, C. W. [Ass't Eng'r, Ch'f 
Eng'r], Steam Eng., H'd Steam 
Eng., between 1874 and 1897 (8 

Ramsay, F. M. [L't-Com'd'r, Capt.], 
H'd Gun., Superintendent, be- 
tween 1865 and 1886 (6 yrs.) 

Rittenhouse, H. O. [Master, Lieut.], 
Math., H'd Drawing, between 
1877 and 1893 (10 yrs.) 

Robeson, H. B. [Com'd'r], H'd 
Gun., 1880 to 1883 (3 yrs.) 

Rodgers, C. R. P. [Lieut., Rear 
Adm'l], Com'd't Mid'n, Superin- 
tendent (6 yrs.) 

Rodgers, G. W. [Lieut.], Com'd't 
Mid'n, 1861 to 1862 (i yr.) 

Ryan, G. P. [L't-Com'd'r], Nav'n, 
H'd Physics, between 1866 and 
1873 (6 yrs.) 

Sampson, W. T. [Lieut., L't- 
Com'd'r, Com'd'r], Ex. Duty, 
Gun., Physics, H'd Physics, Su- 
perintendent, between 1862 and 
1890 (14 yrs.) 

Schley, W. S. [L't-Com'd'r], Ex. 
Duty, Languages, H'd French, 
between 1866 and 1876 (6 yrs.) 

Schouler, J. (L't-Com'd'r, Com'd'r], 
Languages, Ses.., H'd Languages, 
H'd English, between 1873 and 
1888 (10 yrs.) 

Sebree, U. [Lieut., L't-Com'd'r], 
Sea., H'd Sea., between 1884 and 
1895 (3 yrs.) 

472 The United States Naval Academy 

Shepard, E. M. [Com'd'r], Com'd't 
Cadets, H'd Sea., 1878 to i88r (3 

Sicard, M. [L't-Com'd'r], Gun., 
H'd Gun., H'd Drawing, 1865 to 
1868 (3 yrs.) 

Sigsbee, C. D. [L't-Com'd'r, 
Com'd'r], Drawing, H'd Draw- 
ing, H'd Sea., between 1869 and 
i8qi (9 yrs.) 

Simpson, E. [Master, Lieut., L't- 
Com'd'r], Ex. Duty, H'd Gun., 
between 1853 and 1863 (6 yrs.) 

Skerrett, J. S. [Com'd'r], H'd Sea., 
1868 to 1872 (4 yrs.) 

Snyder, H. L. [ist Ass't Eng'r, Ch'f 
Eng'r], Steam Eng., H'd Steam 
Eng., 1869 to 1873 (4 yrs.) 

Sperry, C. L. [Lieut., L't-Com'd'r], 
Math., H'd Gun., between 1874 
and 1891 (11 yrs.) 

Sprague, J. P. [Ch'f Eng'r], H'd 
Steam Eng., 1878 to 18S1 (3 yrs.) 

Stribling, C. K. [Com'd'r], Superin- 
tendent, 1850 to 1853 (3 yrs.) 

Swann, T. L. [Lieut., L't-Com'd'r], 
Ex. Duty, Sea., H'd English, be- 
tween 1862 and 1871 (5 yrs.) 

Swinburne, W. T. [Lieut., L't- 
Com'd'r], Nav'n, Ex. Duty, H'd 
Sea., between 1886 and 1897 (8 

Terry, E. [L't-Com'd'r, Com'd'r], 
H'd Gun., Com'd't Cadets, be- 
tween 1868 and 1878 (7 yrs.) 

Thomas, C. M. [L't-Com'd'r, Com'- 
d'r], Gun., H'd Sea., between 
1880 and i8g8 (3 yrs.) 

Tilley, B. F. (Lieut., L't-Com'd'r), 
Math., Nav'n, H'd Drawing, 
H'd Nav'n, between 1879 and 
1897 (10 yrs.) 

Todd, H. D. [L't-Com'd'r], Math., 
afterwards Professor (see Profes- 
sors' list) 

Upshur, G. P. [Com'd'r], Superin- 
tendent, 1847 to 1850 (3 yrs.) 

Wainwright, R. [Lieut., Com'd'r], 
Eng. 1888-1890. Became Super- 
intendent igoo (2 yrs.) 

Walker, A. [Lieut., L't-Com'd'r],, 
Math., H'd Nav'n, H'd Math., 
between 1873 and 1897 (14 yrs.) 

Walton, T.C. \Surg'\, H'd Physics 
and Hygiene, 1886 to 1889 (3 yrs.) 

Ward, J. H. [Lieut.], H'd Sea.,. 
1845 to 1848 (3 yrs.) 

Watters, J. [Lieut., L't-Cora'd'r]„ 
Ex. DyiXy, H'd Sea., between 1856 
and 1866 (2 yrs.) 

White, E. [L't-Com'd'r, Com'd'r],, 
Ex. Duty, Sea., Com'd't Cadets, 
between 1870 and 1898 (7 yrs.) 

Williamson, T. [Ch'f Eng'r], H'd 
Steam Eng., 1868 to 1869 (i yr.) 

Wise, F. M. [Lieut., Com'd'r], Eng- 
lish, Languages, H'd Languages^ 
between 1877 and 1898 (9 yrs.) 

Wood, W.W. W. [Ch'f Eng'r], H'd 
Steam Eng., 1865 to 1867 (2 yrs) 

Worden, J. L. [Commodore], Super- 
intendent, 1869 to 1874 (5 yrs.) 

Yates, A. R. [t't-Com'd'r, Com'd'r], 
H'd Englisn, 1870 to 1873 (3 yrs.) 




(Including Professors of Mathematics United States Navy and civilian 
Professors but not including officers in active service. Those marked * 
served as Heads of Departments.) 

Alger, P. R., igoo 

Ames, C. E., Math., Dec, 1864, to 

Nov., 1867 (3 yrs.) 
Archer, J. J., English, i865 to 1871 

(5 yrs.) 

Barber, A., English, Oct., 1850, to 

Mar., 1857; Jan.-Feb., 1B68 (5 

Barker, I. S., English, Oct., 1862, 

to Nov., 1865 (j yrs.) 
Baumgras, P., Drawing, Oct., 1867, 

to Mar., 1868 
Beal, F. E. L., Math., 1874 to 1875, 

(r yr.) 
Beecher, M. A., Math., Sept., 1859, 

to June, 1864(5 yrs.) 
Blauvelt, C. F., Drawing, 1872 to 

1899 (27 yrs.) 
Bowen, W. E., English, 1868 to 

i86g (l yr.) 
Brown, A. N., English, 1895 to 1899 

(4 yr^.) 
Bucher, M. H., Nav'n, 1864 to 1865 

(I yr.) 

BuUard, H. C, English, 1866 to 

1867 (I yr.) 
Buswell, H. F., English, 1868 to 

i86g (i yr.) 

*Chauvenet, W., Math, and Nav'n, 

1845 to 1859 (14 yrs.) 
Chauvenet, W. M., Languages, 1850 

to 1853 (3 yrs.) 
*Coffin, J. H. C, Math, and Nav'n, 

1853 to 1865 (12 yrs.) 
Coppa, A., Ass't Sword Master, 1859 

to i86i (2 yrs.) 
Corbesier, A., Sword Master, 1865 

to present (35 yrs.) 

Courcelle, A. V. S., Languages, 
l866 to 1887 (21 yrs.) 

Dalmon, H., Languages, 1873 to 

1894 (21 yrs.) 

Dashiell, P. J., Physics, 1892 to 

present (8 yrs.) 
Davenport, J. A., English, 1861 to 

1862 (i yr.) 
Des Garennes, P. J., Languages, 

1895 to present (5 yrs.) 
Dickson, J. E., English, 1862 to 

1871 (9 yrs.) 

Dovilliers, E., Languages, 1866 to 

1887 (21 yrs.) 
*Dovilliers, L. V., Languages, 1855 

to 1871 (16 yrs.) 

Fay, W. W., English, 1862 to 1898 

(36 yrs.) 
Fisher, D., Physics, 1870 to 1874 

(4 yrs.) 
Ford, T. G., English, 1861 to 1866- 

(5 yrs.) 
Foster, F. H., Math., 1873 to 1874. 

(I yr.) 

Garner, S. , Languages, 1889 to pres- 
ent (n yrs.) 

*Girault, A. N. , Languages, 1845 to 
1866 (21 yrs.) 

Harwood, W., English, 1857 to 

1861 (4 yrs.) 
Heintz, G., Ass't Sword Master, 

1872 to present (2S yrs.) 
Hendrickson, W.W. [L't.-Com'd'r], 

Math., 1870 to 1874; [Professor] 
Math., 1874 to 1890; 1897 to 
present (23 yrs.) 

474 The United States Naval Academy 

Hill, C. E., English, 1870 to 1874 

(4 yrs.) 
Hitchings, H., Drawing, 1862 to 

1869 (7 yrs.) 
♦Hopkins, W. F., Physics, 1850 to 

1859 (9 yrs.) 
Hopkins, W. R., Physics, 1852 to 

1863 (11 yrs.) 
Hyde, C. T., English, 1863 to 1866 

(3 ys.) 

Johnson, C. F., Math., 1865 to 1871 

(6 yrs.) 
Johnson, W. W., Math., 1864 to 

1870; Mechanics,- l88i to 1887; 

Math., 1887 to 1895; Mech's and 

Steam Eng., 1895 to present (25 


Karney, T., English, 185 1 to 1872 
(21 yrs.) 

Langley, J. W., Physics, 1867 to 

1869 (2 yrs.) 
Langley, S. B., Math., 1866 to 1867 

(I yr.) 
Leroux, J., Languages, 1866 to 

present (24 yrs.) 
Little, R., English, 1865 to 1869 

(4 yrs.) 
*Lockwood, H. H., Infantry, Oct., 

1845, to July, 1849 ; Math., July, 

1849, to Jan., 1855 ; Infantry, Jan., 

1855, to May, 1S61; Physics,Apr., 

1866, to 1869; Nat. History, 1869 

to 1871 (21 yrs.) 
Lord, E., English, 1874 to 1877 

(3 yrs-) 

Mackintosh, H. S., English, 1862 to 

1868 (6 yrs.) 
Magnan, C, Languages, 1865 to 

1866 (I yr.) 
Marion, H., Languages, 1887 to 

present (13 yrs.) 
Marron, J. P., Languages, 1869 to 

1871 (2 yrs.) 

Maurice, B., Languages, 1866 to 

1872 (6 yrs.) 

Monsanto, H., Languages, 1864 to 

1866 (2 yrs.) 
Montaldo, P., Languages, 1866 to 

1884 (18 yrs.) 
Munroe, C. E., Physics, 1874 to 1889 

(12 yrs.) 

*Nourse, J. E., English, 1850 to 

1865 (15 yrs.) 

Oliver, M., Drawing, 1867 to 1895 ; 

1899 to present (29 yrs.) 
Osborne, G. A., Math., 1862 to 

1866 (4 yrs.) 

*Prud'homine, L. F., Languages, 

1869 to 1891 (22 yrs.) 

Retz, J. B., Ass't Sword Master, 

1871 to present (29 yrs.) 
*Rice, J. M., Math, and Physics, 

1863 to iSgo (27 yrs.) 
*Roget, E. A., Languages, 1850 to 

1873 (23 yrs.) 

Sanger, C. R., Physics, 1886 to 1892 

(6 yrs.) 
Schaad, J., Languages, 1864 to 1865 

(I yr.) 
*Seager, E., Drawing, 1851 to 1867 

(16 yrs.) 
Searle, G., Math, and Nav'n, 1862 

to 1864 [2 yrs.) 
Smith, A. L., English, 1861 to 1862 

(I yr.) 

* Smith, A. W., Mechanics, 1859 to 

1866 (7 yrs.) 
Smith, R. S., Math, and Drawing, 

1870 to 1877 ( 7 yrs.) 

Smyth, S. N., Math., 1863 to 1864 

(I yr.) 

Snow, F., English, 1873 to 1876 

(3 yrs.) 
*Soley, J. R., English, 1871 to 1882 ■ 

(n yrs.) 



Strohm, M., Physical Training, 
1869 to present (31 yrs.) 

*Terry, N. M., Physics, 1872 to 

present (28 yrs.) 
*Todd, H.D. [L't-Com'd'r], Math., 

1865 to 1866 ; [Professor] Physics, 

1878 to 1886 (9 yrs.) 

Warren, A. W., Drawing, 1868 to 

1872 {4 yrs.) 
White, C. J., Math, and Nav'n, 

1861 to 1870 (9 yrs.) 
Willcox, C. G., Math., 1864 to 1865 

(I yr.) 

*WiUcox, W. H., Math., 1857 to 
1870(13 yrs.) 

Willing, F., English, 1898 to pres- 
ent (2 yrs.) 

Winlock, J., Math., 1859 to 1861 
(2 yrs.) 

Cobb, W. R., English, 1872 to 1873 

(I yr.) 
Hale, C. R., Math., 1863 to 1865 

(2 yrs.) 
Henderson, G. D., English, 1864 to 

1865 (I yr.) 
Hibben, H. B., Math., 186410 1866 

(2 yrs.) 
Hitchtock, W. A., English, 1862 to 

1863 (I yr.) 

*Jones, G., English, 1845 to 1850 

(5 yrs.) 
McLaren, D., English, 1863 to 1S65 

(2 yrs.) 
*Rawson, E. K., English, 1888 to 

1890 (2 yrs.) 
Smith, G. W., Math., 1864 to 1865 

(I yr.) 
Wallace, J. S., English, 1863 to 

1864 (i yr.) 


"Abbey, The,'' 159 

Academic Board, Declaration of In- 
dependence of , 170 ; established at 
Maval School, 155 ; right to re- 
move cadets for misconduct, 301 

Academy, Naval, see Naval Academy 

Adams, D. P., 108 

Adjutant, first, at Naval Academy, 

Alliance, U. S. S., 20 

"Alphabet Song, The," 175 

Alternates, 352 

Alumni Association of Nevif York, 
the, 414 

America, U. S. S., 249, 295 

Ammen, D., 276 ; on Naval Asylum 
School, 120 

Annapolis, selection of Naval School 
site at, 145 

Apollo Row, 160 

Apostles, the, 179 

Ariel, U. S. S., 19 

Armstrong, J., 196 

Asp, U. S. b., 31 

Athletics at Naval Academy 1866, 
266 ; 1890, 336 

Atlantic House, 238 

Aulick, Captain, 88 


Bache, Alex. D., 123 
Bagley, Worth, Naval Cadet, 338 
Bainbridge, William, 48 
Baker, Yorick, Midshipman, 31 
Balch, G. B., 307 
Baldwin, Midshipman, 97 
Ball, graduation, 378 
BaUard, H. E., 122 

Ballard, Midshipman, 32 
Bancroft, George, Secretary, 142, 

144, 151 
Bancroft, U. S. S., 338, 413 
Barber, A. H., 196 
Barnes, J. S., 194, 264 
Barnum's Hotel, examinations at, 

Barron, Samuel, Midshipman, 18 
Barton, Midshipman, 97 
Bartsch, Admiral, 225 
Bassett, Burwell, 39 
Beecher, M. H., 238, 347 
Belcher, J. H., Professor, 126 
Benjamin, Park, 276, 349, 378 
Berwind, E J., 378 
Beverly, story of Midshipman, 52 
Bianchini, L. A., Professor, 114 
Biddle, James, 122, 124 
Biddle, Nicholas, 18 
Bier, Midshipman, 98 
Blake, G. S., 218, 230, 257 
Blydenburgh, B., 237 
Boardman, W. H., Naval Cadet, 

Bonhomme Richard, U. S. S., ig 
Boston, early naval school at, no 
Boston, the brig, 16 
Boston, U. S. S., 61 
Bowles, F. P., 308 
Bradford, D., Professor, 114 
Bradford, R. L., 264 
Brady, W., 222 
Branch, Secretary of Navy, on 

naval schools, 108 
" Brandywine Cottage,'' 161 
" Brandywine, The Roaring,'' song, 

Brandywine, U. S. S., 55, 161 
Breese, K. R., 264 
Breese, S. L., 95 




Brewerton, H., Captain U. S. A., 

British navy, American midshipmen 
in, 15 ; creation of midshipmen in, 
4 ; George Washington never in, 
15 ; life in old, 11 ; midshipmen 
oiBcially recognized in, 5 ; qualifi- 
cations of lieutenant in old, 6 

Brodhead, E., Midshipman, 194 

Buchanan, Franklin, 151, 157, 188 

Buchanan Row, 159 

Buckner, W. P., ig6 

Buildings, of Naval Academy, igoo, 
408 ; of Naval School imperfect, 
201 ; proposed new, of Naval 
Academy, 409 

" Bulkheading," 59 

"Bull Pup," the, 213 

Bullen, Admiral Sir Charles, 9 

Bureau of Navigation, Naval Acad- 
emy under, 278 

Butler, Benjamin F., 230, 296 

Byng, Earl of Torrington, 6 

Cadet engineers, admitted to Naval 
Academy, 1871, 286 ; at Naval 
Academy, 273 ; first cruises of, 
1872, 286 

"Cadet in charge," 387 

Cadet midshipmen, name of students 
changed to, 1870, 284 ; probation 
period fixed at six years, 1873, 

Cadet officers, 194, 211, 265, 325, 

Cadets in Army appointed midship- 
men, 30 

Cain, John, Jr., Midshipman, 194 

Captain, invites midshipmen to din- 
ner, 70 ; midshipmen's jokes on, 
72 _ 

Captains, deterioration of, 131 

Games, Edwin O., Midshipman, 194 

Carter, S. P., 196 

Cemetery, Naval, added to Acad- 
emy, 280 

Cervera, Admiral, at Naval Acad- 
emy, 159 

Chase, R.M., Secretary of Academy, 

Chauncey, Isaac, 94 

Chauvenet, William, Professor, 123, 
125, 151, 157, 182, 188, 196, 346 

Chauvenet, W. M., 196 
Chesapeake and Shannon, action be- 
tween, 32 
Chesapeake, U. S. S., 21, 32, 411 
" Christmas Tree," the, 398 
Church attendance of cadets, 379 
Churchill, Winston, Naval Cadet, 


Civil War, deeds of midshipmen in, 
251 ; Naval Academy grounds 
during, 262 ; Naval Academy in, 
229 ; practice cruises in, 244, 246 

Clemson, H. A., Midshipman, 

Clothing of naval cadet fixed by 
regulation, 368 

Coat-of-arms of Naval Academy, 


Coffin, J. H. C, Professor, 114, 
238, 263, 346 

Coffin, Sir Isaac, 15, 42 

Colonial navy, the, 16 

Colt, use of the, 92 

Columbus, U. S. S., 86, 98 

Commandant of Cadets, 387 

Commandant of Midshipmen, 210 

Commissary, Colonel Swann as, 

Concord, U. S. S., 114 

Conduct grades, 390 

Conduct, report of, 390 

Congress, U. S. S., 47, 86, 92 

Connor, David, 122 

Constellation, U. S. S., 21, 98, 294, 
332, 334 

"Constitution and the Guerriere, 
The," song, 80 

Constitution, U. S. S., 21, 126, 221, 
229, 231-235, 237-241, 262, 279, 

Cook, Midshipman, 98 

Cooke, A. P., 264 

Cooper, Benjamin, Midshipman, 

Cooper, P. H., 339 

Corbesier, A., 393 

Court-martial, of Captain O. H. 
Perry, 94 ; of Commander Macken- 
zie, 138 ; of Midshipman Barton, 
97 ; of Midshipman Marston, 

Court-martials for hazing, see Haz- 

Cox, Midshipman, 32 

Crane, Captain, 95 

Craney, William, 133 



Craven, T. T., 196, 202, 219, 223 
Creighton, John Orde, 85, 93 
" Crickets" club, the, 175 


Dahlgren, J. A., 113, 174, 276 

Dale, U. S. S., 279, 306 

Deane, U. S. S., 20 

Debree, A. M., 196 

Decatur, Stephen, Jr., Midshipman, 

21, 23 
Demerit system igoo, 389 
Department of Discipline, 387 
Desertion in Navy, 68 
Dewey, George, 214, 280 
Dibdin, spurious sea-songs of, 78 
Dinner hours aboard ship, 64 
Diplomas of Naval Academy, 348 
Discipline at Naval Academy 1900, 


D'Orleans, Pierre, 224 

Dovilliers, L., 238, 347 

Downes, John, 26, 138 

Duel, at Naval School, 180 ; of 
Midshipman Cook and Midship- 
man Bier, 98 ; of Midshipman 
Pinckney, 100 ; of Midshipman 
Ward and Midshipman Barton, 
97 ; proposed between American 
and British officers, loi 

Duelling in the Navy, 96 

Dundonald, Lord, first experience 
as midshipman, 10 

Dupont, S. F.,47, 188 

"ifil^ves de marine," French, 13 

Elliott, J. D., 97 

Engineer division of cadets, 334 

Engineers, abolition of 1899, 342 ; 
first instructed at Naval Academy, 
273 ; midshipmen as,' 259 

Ensigns, graduated midshipmen 
commissioned, 256 

Erben, H., 225 

Essex, U. S. S., 21, 35 

Ethics studiedat Naval Academy, 205 

Evolutions on " smart ships," 86 

Examination, competitive, of candi- 
dates, 354; entrance, character 
of, 364 ; entrance, preparations 
for, and time of, 365 ; entrance, 
preparatory schools for, 366 ; en- 
trance, standard of, 417 ; final 

graduating, 405 ; graduating, 399; 
of midshipmen at Barnum's Hotel, 
Examinations, at Naval Academy, 
1900, 395 ; first in Navy, 48 ; of 
Tnidshipmen, 1841, 122 ; of mid- 
shipmen from 1871 to 1873, 285 

Fahey, W. W., 393 

Fairfax, D. McN., 249 

Fanning, Midshipman, kicked by 

John Paul Jones, 19 
Farquhar, N. H., 264 
Farragut, D. G., 34, 86, 109, 258 
Fitch, L., 264 
Flagg, Ernest, 409 
" Flash Frigate," song, 206 
Flogging in the Navy, 92 
Florida, practice ships chase, 248, 

Flushman, Midshipman, 32 
Football at Naval Academy, 377 
Formations at Naval Academy 

1900, 383 
Forrest, Midshipman, 33 
Fort Adams, Naval Academy at, 

Fort Severn, 144, 145, 148, 155, 

Fox, G. v., 254, 259 
France, early naval education in, 

13 ; war of 1798 with, 21 
Franklin, S. R., loi 
Franklin, U. S. S. , 55 
"Frenching," 162, 178 

Gamble, Captain, 95 

Gansevoort, G., 136 

" Gardes de la marine," French, 13 

Garfield, President, speech to ca- 
dets, 310 

" Gas House," the, 162 

Gatewood, R., 308 

General Washington, U. S. S., 20 

" Gentlemen of the watch," 55 

Gerbier establishes first naval 
school, 5 

Girault, A. N., Professor, 157, 187, 
196, 238, 347 

Gloucester, U. S. S., 376 

Goat, whitewashing the, 72 

" God of 2.5," 366 



Goldsborough, L. M., 35, 203, 204, 

Goodwin, Mayor of Annapolis, 179 
" Gouging," beginning of, 205 
Governor's Island, proposed site for 

naval school, 42 
■Governor's mansion bought, z8o 
Graduates' Association, the, 414 
Graduates of Naval Academy, 
dropped under Act of 1882, 313 ; 
number of, 344 ; number of, to 
be appointed to Navy fixed, i88g, 
334 ; percentage of, to candidates, 
345 ; proportion of, in teaching 
force, 393 ; proportion of, to can- 
didates, 416 ; proportions in and 
out the Navy, 345 ; war service 

of, 195 
■Graduation, exercises at, 401 
Greene, S. D., 264 
Greer, J. A., 264 
Gregory, F. H., Midshipman, 33 
■Grimes, Senator, letter of Rodgers 

to, 237 
" Guardias marinas," Spanish, 12 
Guardo, 52 
Guerrih-e, U. S. S., 108 


Hails of officers, 73 
Hamilton, Admiral Sir Charles, 9 
Hamilton, Admiral Sir Edward, 9 
Hamilton, Alexander, proposes naval 

school, 24 
Hamilton, Paul, Secretary, 119 
Hamilton, Talbot, keeps naval 

school, 23 
Hayes, Chas. W., 136 
Hazing, 193, 288, 289, 301, 310, 324, 

332, 335, 373 
Heath, Captain, 94 
Hendrickson, W. W., 393 
Hendrix, F. M., Midshipman, 266 
Henshaw, David, Secretary, 126 
Honor system at Naval Academy, 

Hopkins, W. F., Professor, 196 
Hopkins, W. S., Professor, 346 
Housatonic, U. S. S., 223 
Hoyt, E., 274 
Hudson, U. S. S., 85 
*' Hump," the, in naval promotion, 

Huston, Jos. T., Professor, 114 
Hynson, J. R., Midshipman, 172 

Indiana, U. S. S., 345 

Inouye, Y., 287 

Instructors at Naval Academy, peri- 
ods of service of, 393 

Insubordination at Naval Academy, 

Intrepid, U. S. S., 21, 26 

Iowa, U. S. S., 345 

Israel, Joseph, Midshipman, 26 

" Jack and the King," 78 
Jackson, Andrew, favors duels, 96 
Japanese students at Naval Acad- 
emy, 287 
Jarvis, J. C, Midshipman, 22 
Jarvis, J., drummer, 348 
Java, U. S. S., school on, 109 
Jeffers, W. N., 277 
Jefferson, Thomas, endorses naval 

course at Military Academy, 30 ; 

proposes naval studies at William 

and Mary College, 30 
yohn Adams, U. S. S., 244 
John Hancock, U. S. S., 192 
Johnson, William, Midshipman, 31 
Jones, George, Rev., 157 
Jones, Jacob, 23 
Jones, John Paul, ig 
Jones, T. Ap. C, 72, 89, 95, loi, 

Jones, Wm. , Secretary, proposes 

naval school, 37 
Journal, Midshipmen's, 46, 91 
Journal of Midshipman Dupont, 47 
Jumper, 201 
Junior ensign, grade created, 326 


Kane, S. N., Midshipman, 266 

Karney, Thomas, Professor, 326 

Katsu, K., 287 

Kedge Anchor, 222 

Kennedy, Captain, 95 

Key, Midshipman, 97 

" King's Letter Boys," 6, 8 

Kunitono, J., 287 


Langdon, Henry, Midshipman, 31 
Laub, Midshipman, 33 



Lavallette, E. A. F., 144 

Lawrence, James, 21, 23 

Lee', S. J., 1 96 

Leecock, R. W., 136 

Leggett. William, Midshipman, 207 

Lewis, J. E., 263 

Liberty, midshipmen denied shore, 

Libraryof Naval Academy, 370 

Lieutenant, examination of midship- 
men for, iSig, 48 ; grade of, de- 
vised, 2 ; qualifications of, in 
British navy, 6 

Lockers, midshipmen's, 56 

Lockwood, H. H., Professor, 148, 
157, 162, 181-185, 19b, 212, 235, 
298, 346 

Lockwood, J. A., 157, 181 

Lockwoodville, 295 

Luce, Stephen B., 221, 244, 246- 
249, 264 


Macedonian, U. S. S., 225, 246-250, 
279 ; two ships of same name, 248 

Mackenzie, Alex. S., 134 

Mahan, Captain, definition of 
"smart ship," 84 

Mahon, Port, 74 

Marblehead, U. S. S., 259 

Marcy, Samuel, 126, 157, igb, 223, 

Marines, old Navy opinions on, 183 
Marion, U. S. S., 244, 246, 279, 

Marking system, original, at Naval 

School, i6q 
Marston, John, 93, 258 
Martinovitch, Marcus, 12 
Master's mates, 69, 245 
MatsmuUa, Z. Z., 287 
Matthews, Edmund O., 230, 246 
Maury, Matthew F., 107, 115, 132 
May, lilidshipman, 97 
Mayo, Isaac, 144 
" May plebes," 370 
" Maypole," the, 398 
McClure, David, Professor, iig, 

122, 123 
McDonough, Thomas, Midshipman, 

McGowan, Midshipman, 31 
McGowen, B., Professor, 114 
McHenry, James, proposes naval 

school, 24 

McLane, Allen, Midshipman, 172 

McNair, F. V., 341 

Meade, R. W., Jr., 264 

Meade, R. W., Sr., Midshipman, 

Merit roll, how made up, 1854, 

" Mermaid, The,'' song, 79 

Mess, midshipmen's, 60, 64 

Mexico, deeds of midshipmen dur- 
ing war with, 172 

Michie, Dennis M., 338 

Midshipman, cartel value of, 251 ; 
created by royal regulation, 1676, 
5 ; first reference to, 4 ; George 
Washington not a, 15 ; lower 
grade of naval officer, 4 ; official 
ending of, made in old Navy, 209 ; 
of Queen Anne's time, 6 ; origin 
of name, 3 ; passed, 104 ; warrant 
of, 102 

Midshipmen, acting, at Naval 
Academy, 193 ; amusements of, 
73 ; army cadets appointed as, 
30 ; at battle of Lake Erie, 33 ; 
appointments of, 20, 40, 132, 305 ; 
baiting the, 8g ; captivity of 
PkiladelphicCs, 27 ; commissioned 
ensigns on graduation, 256 ; com- 
munity of garments among, 58 ; 
complaint of old Navy because of 
absence of, 245, 253 ; dates of 
1840 to 1849, 165 ; deeds of, in 
Civil War, 251'; demand instruc- 
tion in 1815, 38 ; duels of, 96 ; 
examinations of, 114, 122, 285 ; 
fare of, at sea, 62 ; first American, 
15 ; first at United States Naval 
School, 157 ; first in Navy, 18 ; 
first practice cruise of, in Prome- 
theus, 39 ; foreign, in United 
States Navy, 225 ; French, early 
education of, 13 ; governed by 
standing orders, 46 ; graduation 
of, under law of 1862, 256 ; grog 
stopped, 63 ; increase of, in 1809, 
29 ; in Navy during Civil War, 
255 ; in Navy in 1801, 26 ; in 
Tripoli campaign, 26 ; invited to 
captain's table, 70 ; large classes 
admitted, 255 ; law governing 
admis.sion of, 1869, 281 ; law 
of 1845 governing appointment 
of, 1 3g ; life of , at Naval Asy- 
lum School, 120 ; life of, in Brit- 
ish navy, 1 1 ; life of, in fleet, 



Midshipmen — Continued 

1869, 282 ; life of, in fleet, 1877, 
305 ; life of, in receiving ship, 52 ; 
life of, in steerage, 56 ; name 
changed to junior ensign, 326 ; 
noon report of, 71 ; no regular 
duties assigned, 44 ; number in 
1818, 103 ; number on old ships, 
55 ; of U. S. S. Chesapeake, 32 ; 
on John Paul Jones's ships, ig ; 
on " smart ships," 87 ; pay of, in 
»835, no; personal assaults on, 
93 ; poetry by, 207, 304 ; pranks 
of, at Naval Academy, 54, ig8, 
220 ; promotion of, 1825 to 1829, 
103 ; proposed requirements for 
promotion, 1832, 112 ; qualifica- 
tions for promotion, 18 19, 48 ; 
Regulations of 1802 governing, 
44 ; returned to fleet, 257 ; revolt 
of the, in 1816, 94; school life 
afloat, 105 ; sent to United States 
Naval School, 156 ; separation 
North and South, 233 ; servants 
in British navy, 10 ; shore duty 
for, abolished, 156; sleepy on 
walch, 66 ; stations during evolu- 
tions, 67 ; students at Naval 
Academy appointed, 1862, 250 ; 
uniform, see Uniform ; watches at 
sea, 65 ; yarns of, 76 
Military Academy [see also West 
Point), organized, 25 ; proposed 
naval school in, 24 ; proposed 
naval course in 1808 in, 29 
Miller, J. N., 194, 264 
Miller, J. W., 349 
" Misdemeanor book " of 1877, 302 
Mississippi, U. S. S., 218 
Motiongahela, U. S. S. , 413 
Monument, the Midshipmen's, 172 
Moral Science, Wayland's, 205 
Morel, J., Professor, 114 
Morris, Charles, Midshipman, 21, 26 
Mosquito, of Virginian navy, 18 
Mulberry tree, the old, at Naval 

School, 158 
Mutiny on U. S. brig Somers, 134 


Nantucket, U. S. S., 306 

Naval Academy, United .States, ad- 
mission of public school students, 
246 ; amusements at, 377 ; at At- 
lantic House, Newport, 238 ; at 

outbreak of Civil War, 229 ; ath- 
letics at, 343 ; cadets divided into 
line and engineer divisions, 334 ; 
character of instruction at, 1900, 
394 ; church attendance, 379 ; class 
distinctions created, 219 ; class 
of -1854, 195 ; class of 1867 at, 
276 ; class organization, Newport, 
242 ; conduct grades established, 

318 ; cost of, 345 ; course changed 
to four years, 192 ; crew organi- 
zation, 197 ; detachment of stu- 
dents, 1861, 236 ; discipline at, 
1900, 387 ; division of time for 
study at, 1900, 376 ; established 
1850, 188 ; examinations at, 1900, 
395 ; first college custom at, 205 ; 
first graduating exercises, 196 ; 
first school-ship, 221 ; formations 
^f. 383 ; graduates come back for 
examination, 1869, 283 ; graduates 
discharged under Act of 1882, 
315 ; grounds after Civil War, 
262 ; grounds enlarged, 280, 334 ; 
hazing begins, 1871, 288 ; honor 
system at, 269 ; in Spanish War, 
339 ; instruction in effects of 
liquors, 328 ; insubordination at, 

319 ; in summer of 1861, 237 ; 
Japanese students at, 287 ; life at 
Newport, 240 ; marking system, 
1850, ig6, 395 ; merit rolls at, 
215 ; negro students at, zgi ; 
opposing influences to, in Civil War 
times, 254 ; organization, 1856, 
210 ; original demerit system, igo ; 
original departments of study, 
190 ; original periods at, i8g ; 
paying students proposed, 246 ; 
periods of service of instruc- 
tors, 3g3 ; proficiency mark in 
igoo, 381 ; proportion of civilian 
professors, 1864 to 1866, 265 ; 
proportion of graduates to can- 
didates, 416 ; proposal to call it 
Severn Point, 260 ; proposed new 
buildings at, 4og ; punishments 
devised by Porter, 275 ; punish- 
ments in 1877, 302 ; qualifications 
required of candidates, 350 ; Ram- 
say's reforms, 1881, 317 ; reci- 
tations at, 384 ; rejection of 
candidates, 1870 to 1875, 300 ; 
renewal of athletics at, 336 ; re- 
turned to Annapolis, 260 ; scholas- 
tic course, 1881, 307, 317 ; seal of, 



Naval Acidemy — Continued 

349 ; secession question at, 226 ; 
steam engineering course begun, 
271 ; studies in, 1853, 204 ; teach- 
ing force at, lyoo, 392 ; transfer 
to Newport, 234; treatment of, 
by Congress, 416 ; Tripoli Monu- 
ment at, 27 ; under Bureau of 
Navigation, 278 ; Union troops 
at, 230 

Naval Academy of Confederate 
States, 235 

Naval Academy, Royal, 8 

Naval Asylum School, the, iig, 127 

Naval cadets, appointment of, 351 ; 
church attendance, 379 ; clothing 
fixed by regulation, 368 ; declared 
by Supreme Court to be officers 
of the Navy, 333 ; entrance for- 
malities of, 368; first-year ex- 
perience of, 369 ; graduation of, 
400 ; illness of, how treated, 383 ; 
laws governing admission of, 35 c ; 
life after graduation, 404 ; mili- 
tary organization of, 374 ; qualifi- 
cations of, 359 ; rooms of, 372 ; 
students called, 313 

Naval constructors appointed from 
graduates of Naval Academy, 308 

Naval school, advocated by Com- 
modore Stewart, 139 ; advocated 
by officers of Vincennes, 139 ; ad- 
vocated by Secretary Southard, 
1825, 41 ; at Naval Asylum, the, 
119, 127 ; authorized by Congress, 
1846, 168; buildings of, 158 : co- 
lonial, 17; division of time at, 
1845, 165, 169 ; early, 108 ; early 
examinations at, 186 ; first, 5 ; 
first qualifications for entrance, 
155 ; founding of United States, 
142 ; French, 13, 112 ; in Bashaw's 
castie in Tripoli, 27 ; of 1720, 7 ; 
opening of JJnited States, 157 ; 
original classes at, 165 ; original 
course at, 156, 166 ; original mark- 
ing system at, 169 ; original plan 
for, 146 ; petition for, 1836, in ; 
proposed by Burwell Bassett, 
1816, 39; proposed by Hamilton, 
24 ; proposed by Secretary Jones, 
1814, 37 ; proposed by Secretary 
Thompson, 1822, 40 ; proposed 
by Sir Isaac Coffin, 42 ; proposed 
in Military Academy, 24 ; pro- 
posed sites for, 130, 140 ; Russian, 

at Venice, 12 ; Talbot Hamilton's, 

Navy, Act of August 5, 1882, effect 

of, on, 312 ; first examinations in, 

48 ; first practice cruise in, 39 ; 

formation of the, 17 ; in 1798, the, 

24 ; increased by law, 1816, 38 ; 

number of officers in, 1801, 25 ; 

of Virginia, 18 ; reconstruction of, 

in 1794, 20 ; reorganization of, 

1862, 244; sale of the, in 1801, 

25 ; school of the, proposed, 24 ; 

service in, after war of 1812, 96 ; 

steam, beginning of the, 128 
Neef's school, Farragut's attendance 

at, 36 
Negro students at Naval Academy, 

Nelson, Midshipman, 162, 187 
Newark, U. S. S., 345 
Newport, city of, seeks to keep Naval 

Academy, 243 ; transfer of Naval 

Academy to, 234 
New quarters built, 280 
New York, early naval school at, 

New York, U. S. S., 345. 
Nicholson, Captain, 95 
Nire, K. K., 287 

Norfolk, early naval school at, 108 
Norris, Sir John, 6 
North Carolina, U. S. S., 114, 130, 

Nourse, J. E., Professor, 196, 264, 



" Officer in charge," 197, 387 
Officer, naval, appointments of, in 

reigns of Elizabeth and James, i ; 

midshipman lower grade of, 4 
"Officer of the day," 387 
O'Kane, James, 264 
" Oldsters" at Naval Academy, 158, 

193, 209 
" Owls Club," the, 175, 177. 19° 

Parker, F. A., 306 

Parker, W. H., 88, 173, 235 

Passaic, U. S. S., 333 

Passed midshipman, 104, no, 113 

Paulding, J. K., Secretary, 119 

Perry, M. C, 136, 144. 187 



Perry, Oliver H., 21, 94. 

Personnel Act of iSgg, 256, 342 

Perth Amboy claims Naval Acad- 
emy, 243 

Peter of Russia, 12 

Phelps, T. S., 61 

Philadelphia, U. S. S., 26 

Phythian, R. L., 264, 335 

Pillsbury, W., Midshipman, 172 

Pinckney, Midshipman, 100 

Plymouth, U. S. S., 202, 220, 221, 
226, 22g 

Police system at Naval Academy, 
igoo, 387 

Porcupine, U. S. S., 33 

Port Mahon, 74 

Porter, Benjamin H., Midshipman, 

Porter, D. D., 21, 27, 261, 266, 269, 

274, 275, 27g-28i, 284 
Potomac, U. S. 6., 58, 78, 173 
Potter, Midshipman, kicked by John 

Paul Jones, ig 
Powell, W. H., Naval Cadet, 340 
Practice cruise, first in Navy, 3g ; 

first at Naval Academy, 192 ; 

from 1853 to l85g, 202, 218, 220; 

in Civil War, 244-246 ; in 1866, 

272 ; in 186S, 279 i i» 1887, 332 ; 

in i88g, 334 ; in 1899, 398 ; of 

cadet engineers, first, 286 ; of 

French naval students, 13; 

of Russian naval students, 12 
Practice ships at Naval Academy, 

192, 244, 306, 338, 413 
Preble, Edward, 18, 27 
Preble, George H., 122 
Preble, U. S. S., 88, 192, 202, 219 
Professors in Navy, 1837, 114 
Prometheus, U. S. S.. 39 
Promotion, delay of, incident to 

Civil War, 255 

Quartermaster, functions of old, 3 


Rainbow, the, 230 
Raleigh, Sir W., i 
Ramsay, Francis M., 264, 316, 328 
Randolph, Midshipman, 32 
Read, George C, 122, 144 
Receiving ship, life on, 52 
Recitations at Naval Academy, 384 
Reefer, origin of name, 3 

Regulations of Naval Academy, 

1850, 190 
Revolt of officers of fleet, 1816, 94 
Revolution, naval officers of, 18 
Robert Center, the (yacht presented 

to Naval Academy), 342 
Robeson, George M., Secretary, 295 
Roche, M., Professor, 114 
Rodgers, Christopher R. P., 2ig, 

227, 228, 237, 287, 2g8, 300-302, 

306, 310, 316 
Rodgers, George W., 234, 238 
Rodriguez, P. J., Professor, 114, 

Rogers, H., 136 
Roget, Edward A., Professor, ig6, 

238, 347 
Rosenthal (saloon-keeper), 178 
" Roseygo," 179 
Rowan, Stephen C, iii, 278 
Rowdy Row, 161 
Royal Naval Academy, 8 
Royal Naval College, abolition of, 

Royal Sovereign, launch of the, 2 
Ruschenberger, Surgeon, 188 

Sampson, William T., 228, 298, 

"Sand-fly," the, 178 
Santee, U. S. S., 241, 268, 279; naval 

cadet's first experience on, 369 
" Santeeing," 241 
Savannah, U. S. S. , 27g 
Schley, Winfield S., 226, 2g8 
Scholarship, standard at Naval Acad- 
emy, 295 
School, Naval, see Naval School 
Schoolmasters, in British navy, 9 ; 

in United States Navy, 27, 30, 105 
School-ship, first at Naval Academy, 

221 ; at Newport, 240 ; Santee, 

Schools for midshipmen on cruising 

ships, 106 
Schools, naval, early, 108 ; in 1833, 

Seager, Edward, Professor, ig6, 

238, 347, 348 
Seal of Naval Academy, 349 
Seamanship, examinations in, 1S41, 

122 ; manuscripts, 222 
Seamanship, Luce's, 222, 224 
Selfridge, Thomas O., Jr., 194, 264 



Senate, Midshipman, 33 

Serata, R., 287 

Servants, midshipmen as, in British 

navy, 10 
Severn Point, proposed name for 

Naval Academy, 260 
Shalcings, 276 
Shanties, sea, 78 
Sherburn, Midshipman, 97 
Shubrick, T. B , Midshipman, 172 
Shubrick, W. B., 95, 188 
Sicard, M., 264 
Sick-list, the, 383 
Sigourney, Midshipman, 31 
Simpson, E., 160, 164, 238, 244 
" Smart sliijls," 84 
Smith, A. W., Professor, 238, 346 
Smith, Geo. W., Rev., 270 
Smoking at Naval Academy. 307 
Somers, R., Midshipman, 21 
Somers, U. S. S. , 134 ; loss of, 172 ; 

mutiny on, 134 
"Song, Alphabet," 175; "of the 

Spirits," 164 
Southard, S., Secretary, 41, 58, in 
Spain, naval education in, 12 
Spanish War, naval cadets in, 339 
Spark, U. S. S., 97 
Spencer, J. C, 133 
Spencer, Philip, hanging of Mid- 
shipman, 133 
Spencer, W. A., 133 
" Spirits Club," the, 164 
Standish, U. S. S., 333, 376 
" Star" cadets, 295, 397 
Steam vessels, first, in Navy, 128 
Steerage, arrangement of, on old 

ships, 56, 60 
Stembel, R. N., ill 
Stewart, Charles, 138, 139 
St. Lawrente, U. S. S., 225 
Stockton, R. F., 95 
Stories, midshipmen's, 59, 76 
Stribling,,C. K., 196 
Stribling,' J. M., Midshipman, 195 
Stribling Row, 160 
Stringham, S. H., 95, 245 
Studies, arrangement of 1900, 391 ; 

weights of, 1854 to 1858, 215 
Study, proficiency required in, 1900, 

Sumner, Charles, on Somers mutiny, 

'39 ^ „ 

" Sun of Liberty has Set, 303 
Superintendents of Naval Academy, 

see Balch, Blake, Buchanan, 

Cooper, Goldsborough, McNair, 
Parker, F. A., Phythian, Porter, 
D. D., Ramsay, Kodgers. C. R. 
P., Sampson, Stribling, Upshur, 
Wainwriyht, Worden 

Supply, U. S. S., 262 

Swann, Thomas, 203 

Swatara, U. S. S., 277 

" Sweethearts and Wives," song, 79 

Syren, U. S. S., 32 

Takasaki, M., 287 

Tallapoosa, U. S. S., 286 

Tatnall, J., 100, 116 

Tennessee, U. S. S., 346 

Terry, N. M., Professor, 393 

Thompson, E., 136 

Thompson, R. M., 336, 338, 378, 

Thompson, Secretary, proposes 
naval school, 1822, 40 

Todd, J. M., Midshipman, 194 

Torpedo, Bushnell, 33 

Toscan, F., Midshipman, 31 

Trenchard, S. D., in 

Tripoli campaign, the, 26 

Tripoli Monument at Naval Acad- 
emy, 27 

Trophies at Naval Academy, 379 

Truxton, Thohias, 18, 21 

Turning back abolished, 318 


Uniform, colonial naval, 16 ; of 
entering naval cadet, 369 ; of 
midshipman, 1820, 50; of mid- 
shipman and passed midshipman, 
1830-1833, 113; of passed midship- 
man, 104 ; Regulations of 1847, 
200; of 1866, 266; of 1867- 
1869, 281, 282 ; of 1881, 311 ; of 
1884, 326 ; of igoo (cadet officers), 

United States, U. S. S., 114, 149. 

Upshur, G. P., 174, 180- 188 
Urdaneta, U. S. S., 34 1 
Uriu, S., 287 

Vandalia, U. S. S., 77. "4 
Venice, Russian naval school at, 77 



Vermandois, Due de, 13 
Vernon, Admiral, 16 
Vincennes, U. S. S., 139 
Virginia, navy of, 18 
Volunteers by order, 6 


Wadsworth, H., Midshipman, 26 
Wainwright, R., 344 
Walker, W., 276 
Ward, E. C, Professor, 114 
Ward, J. H., log, 126, 157, 174, 347 
Warrant, Midshipman's, 50, 102 
Warrington, L., 58 
Washington, George, 15 
Washington, Lawrence, 16 
Washington, U. S. S., 85, 93 
Wasp, U. S. S., 31 
Watches, division of midshipmen in, 

Watson, J. C, 226 
Welles, Gideon, Secretary, 244, 254, 


Wells, H., Midshipman, 31 
West Point, football games with, 
337 ; midshipmen studying at, 
rog ; midshipmen visit, 279 
Wilcox, W. H., Professor, 238, 264, 

Williams, Jonathan, 29 
Windmill Point, 145 
Winlock, J., Professor, 238 
Wood, Midshipman, 97 
Wood, W. C, Naval Cadet, 341 
Wood, W. W. W., 264, 271 
Worden, J. L., 284,294, 295 
Wyman, T. H., Midshipman, 222 
Wyoming, U. S. S., 335 

Yacht, presented to Naval Academy, 

Yarns, sailors', 78 
Youchi, S., 287 
Young, Midshipman, 173 


THE STORY OF THE CIVIL WAR. A Concise Account of the 
War in the United States of America between i86i and 1865. By 
John Codman Ropes, Member of the Massachusetts Historical 
Society, The Military Historical Society of Massachusetts, Fellow of 
the Royal Historical Society. Author of "The Army Under Pope,'' 
"The First Napoleon," "The Campaign of Waterloo,'' etc. To 
be complete in four parts, with comprehensive maps and battle 
plans. Each part will be complete in itself and will be sold separately. 
Part I. Narrative of Events to the Opening of the Campaign of 1862. 

With 5 maps. 8vo $1 50 

Part II. The Campaigns of 1862. With 13 maps. 8vo . 2 50 

'* Among all the accounts of the Civil War, the narrative of Dr. Ropes is unique in 
that it treats the subject impartially, and from the standpoint of both North and South. 
. . . As a clear, comprehensive, and complete survey of the first two years of the 
war his history will certainly rank with the best." — New Vork Mail and Express. 

REBELLION. Addresses delivered before the Commandery of 
the Military Order of the Loyal Legion of the United States. 
First Series, for 1888-QI. Edited by James Grant Wilson and 
Titus Munson Coan, M.D. With steel portrait of Admiral Farragut. 

Svo net $2 so 

Second Series, for i8g6 Edited by A. Noel Blakeman. With 
portraits. Svo ........ net $2 50 

"Some of the most interesting, and valuable historical data that has seen light since 
the war. Besides their present interest, these sketches will furnish the historical writer 
of the future with data that is beyond question, and, therefore, most valuable in conserv- 
ing the truth about the history of the great war of 1861-65. As military descriptive 
wntings they have never been excelled in American literature." — JVaskin^on Artny and 
Navy Register, 

ULYSSES S. GRANT, and the Period of National Preservation 
and Reconstruction. 1822-1885. By William Conant Church, 
late Lieut.-Colonel, U.S.A., author of " Life of John Ericsson." 
No. 21 in the "Heroes of the Nations Series." Fully illustrated. 
Large i2mo, cloth, $1 50 ; h^lf leather, gilt top . • $1 75 

"It is a work of high value for its completeness, for its review of the period of 
national preservation and reconstruction, and for its admirable handling of the great mass 
of momentous events with which the career of General Grant was associated." — Rochester 
Dernocrat and Chronicle, 

ROBERT E. LEE, and the Southern Confederacy. 1807-1870. 

By Prof. Henry Alexander White, of Washington and Lee Uni- 

No. 22 in the "Heroes of the Nations Series.'' Fully illustrated. 
Large l2mo, cloth, $1 50 ; half leather, gilt top . . . $1 75 

". . He tells the story of the General's life in admirable style. He is intensely 
earnest, and is interesting from first to last. He has labored long and faithfully to 
gather all possible information and makes judicious use of the materials accumulated. 
When the reader ends the volume it is with the wish that it had been much longer.'' 
— New York Mail and Express, 

New York and London 



Vol. I.— From the AUeghanies to the Mississippi. 1769-1776. 
Vol. II.— From the AUeghanies to the Mississippi. 1777-1783. 
Vol. III.— The Founding of the Trans-AUeghany Commonwealths. 

Vol. IV. — Louisiania and the Northwest. 1791-1807. 

Each volume is complete in itself and is sold separately. 
Octavo, cloth, with maps. Each ... $2 50 
" An excellent work, such as we think no one else could have written."— ii7M<&» Saturday 

" A story full of stirring incidents, which never grows dull from the first page to _ the last ; 
ttritten after much research, and with impartial soberness ; an admirable contribution to the 
history of America." — London Spectator. 

" Few writers of American history have covered a wider or better field of research, or arc 
more in sympathy with the best modem method of studying history from original sources." 
—Atlantic Monthly. 


Sketches of Sport on the Northern Cattle Plains. With 27 full-page wood en- 
gravings and 8 smaller engravings, from designs by A. B. Frost, R. Swain 
Gifford, J. C. Beard, Fannie E. Gifford, and Henry Sandham. Bevelled 

boards, 8° $3 00 

" One of those distinctively American books which ought to be always welcomed as con- 
tributing distinctly to raise the literary prestige of the country all over the world. — New York 

" This book may claim an honorable place on the same shelf with Isaac Walton's Cotnjileti 
Angler and Waterton's Wanderings; it is certain to achieve a wide and permanent popular- 
ity, — London Spectator. 


With an account of the Big Game of the United States, and its Chase with 
Horse, Hound, and Rifle. With illustrations by. Remington, Frost, Sand- 
ham, Eaton, Beard, and others. 8" $3 oc 

" No American is better qualified than Mr. Roosevelt to write on such a subject as this ; 
for he has himself hunted and killed every kind of game native to the United States, has lived 
on our so-called frontier and known the peculiar nfe and thought of its people, and above all 
possesses a true appreciation of nature, animate and inanimate, and the literary ability to relate 
what he has seen." — New York Nation^ 

" Written by a mighty hunter, also a naturalist as well as a sportsman, a close observer as 
well as a sure shot ; not John Burroughs himself could write more interestingly of the sights 
and sounds of the wilderness." — Philadelphia Telegraph, 


Or, The History of the United States Navy during the last war with Great 
Britain, To which is appended an account of the Battle of New Orleans. 
8th edition, 8", cloth $2 50 

" The volume is an excellent one in every respect, and shows in so young an author the 
best promise for a good historian — fearlessness of statement, caution, endeavor to be impar- 
tial, and a brisk and interesting way of telling events." — N, Y. Times, 

" The most accurate, as it certainly is the most cool and impartial, and in some respects the 
most intrepid, account that has yet appeared of the naval actions of the war of 1812.*' — Harper's 


And Other Essays, Social and Political. 12**, gilt top . , . $1 50 
" These papersiare of sterling merit, and well worthy of perusal. . . , Mr. Roosevelt 
writes in a direct and forcible manner, and shows a broad and intelligent comprehension of the 
attitude of the citizen towards the problem of municipal government." — Detroit Free Press, 

G. P. PUTNAM'S SONS, New York and London.